From the Document: "For decades, data privacy and protection issues have been sticking points in U.S.-European Union (EU) relations. The EU considers the privacy of communications and the protection of personal data to be fundamental rights, codified in EU law, while U.S. policy protects certain data on a sectoral basis. To address EU concerns that the United States does not sufficiently protect personal data, the United States and the EU have concluded data transfer agreements in both the commercial and law enforcement sectors. However, unauthorized disclosures in the media in 2013 of U.S. surveillance programs and the alleged involvement of some U.S. telecommunications and internet companies heightened EU concerns about U.S. government access to EU citizens' personal data. Resulting tensions have impacted confidence in U.S.-EU data transfer accords, threatening bilateral trade for U.S. and EU businesses, and elevated congressional concerns that the EU approach to data protection creates unfair trade barriers and limits U.S. firms' access to the EU market."
CRS In Focus, IF11613
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/