AWS and the CLOUD Act
While news of Brexit dominates headlines in the United Kingdom, another important event took place recently in London. U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard W. Downing addressed the myths and realities of the Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act (“CLOUD Act”), in a speech at the Academy of European Law Conference. Following the speech, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) published a whitepaper and FAQ clarifying the purpose and scope of the CLOUD Act and addressing many of the misunderstandings of this law.
I strongly encourage people to read the speech, the DOJ’s whitepaper, and the FAQ to understand what the CLOUD Act actually does and does not do. Simply put, the CLOUD Act provides minor updates to a decades-old law that is strictly limited to helping law enforcement agencies fight and deter international criminal and terrorist activity. It does not, as some have suggested, give U.S. law enforcement agencies free access to data stored in the cloud.