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US-UK Data Access Agreement, signed on Oct 3, is an executive agreement under CLOUD Act

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Update (October 4, 10:25 am): The US and UK signed the world's first executive agreement under the CLOUD Act on October 3. US Attorney General William Barr and UK Home Secretary Priti Patel signed the Data Access Agreement in Washington, DC, which will allow the two countries, in cases of serious crimes, to demand electronic data from tech companies based in the other country without legal barriers. We first reported on this yesterday (read the story below). You’re reading it here first: As numerous people around the world suspected, the Data Access Agreement which will be signed between the US and the UK later this month is an executive agreement under the American CLOUD Act, a Justice Department official confirmed to MediaNama. This means that contrary to what was initially reported by The Times, social media companies such as WhatsApp will not be mandated to decrypt encrypted communication even if the British government orders them to do so. This will not have an impact on the WhatsApp traceability case in India. Statement from Justice Department Official: “For the past several years, the United States and the United Kingdom have been in negotiations to reach a cross-border electronic evidence access agreement. In March 2018, Congress passed the CLOUD Act, which authorizes the United States to enter into bilateral executive agreements with rights-respecting partners that lift each party’s legal barriers to the other party’s access to electronic data for criminal investigations. Such information is critical to investigations of serious crime by authorities…

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