European Union, U.S. to share banking data to fight terrorism

Agreement reached to grant US access to European bank transactions to fight terrorism.

From Ellen Nakashima, the Washington Post:  The European Union has reached an agreement with the United States that will allow European bank data to continue to be shared for counterterrorism purposes, but only after liberal members of parliament secured stronger privacy guarantees.

Under a five-year agreement signed Monday by the European Council, the E.U.’s governing body, U.S. officials can request European financial data relevant to a specific terrorist investigation if they substantiate the need for the data. …

Under the deal, the United States would be able to retain financial data for five years, and the program would be monitored by an independent overseer. The United States must delete or correct inaccurate data and grant redress in U.S. courts if an individual’s financial or personal information is abused.

The data in question consist of financial "messages" between banks that describe transactions such as wire transfers between two individuals’ accounts. They might include names, addresses and account numbers.  (photo: AFP)

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