Latest in Gear

Image credit:

Countries back plan to create 'free flow' of data across borders

The Osaka Track might help digital business -- if it gets enough support.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
June 29, 2019
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Kazuhiro Nogi/Pool Photo via AP

It might become easier to shuttle data across borders in the future. A total of 24 countries have signed a statement supporting the Osaka Track, a plan from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that would create rules for a "free flow" of data while respecting privacy, copyright and security. The commitment is meant to foster digital businesses that might otherwise stumble over legal hurdles.

The signatories include major countries like the US, China and Russia. However, there are already concerns as to whether or not this will lead to concrete action. Some of the participants are highly protective of their country's data, for various reasons. China and Russia, for instance, tend to insist on companies storing data locally both as a competitive tool and to help them crack down on political dissidents. The European Union, meanwhile, is concerned about privacy violations that can come with sharing info outside of member states.

Other G20 members, including India, Indonesia and South Africa, were also absent. India in particular has wanted to keep data at home to claim a competitive edge.

Osaka Track could still be helpful. It promises to frame negotiations over digital commerce at the World Trade Organization, where 78 countries intend to participate. However, it's really just the start of a long, uncertain process -- albeit a promising one.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Chevy will start selling EV retrofit kits in 2021

Chevy will start selling EV retrofit kits in 2021

View
AI can detect COVID-19 by listening to your coughs

AI can detect COVID-19 by listening to your coughs

View
$149 Playdate handheld is 'ready to go,' orders start in early 2021

$149 Playdate handheld is 'ready to go,' orders start in early 2021

View
Nest thermostats in the US and Canada can now monitor your HVAC system

Nest thermostats in the US and Canada can now monitor your HVAC system

View
The Morning After: Apple starts a repair program for AirPods Pro ANC problems

The Morning After: Apple starts a repair program for AirPods Pro ANC problems

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr