Europe’s highest court ruled Tuesday that an international agreement that allowed U.S. businesses like Google and Facebook to access Europeans’ digital information infringed on privacy rights. The European Court of Justice said the 15-year-old “Safe Harbor” agreement was invalid, adding that it gave U.S. officials routine access to Europeans’ online information. The ruling raises concern about how companies like Amazon and Apple could continue acquiring and analyzing online data from their millions of users worldwide. Though many multinational companies have negotiated side agreements with the EU, the court’s ruling could result in tougher restrictions on specific data transfers to the U.S. The decision cannot be appealed.
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