CBS News

U.S. and Australia begin talks on law enforcement data-sharing agreement

By Paulina Smolinski

Washington — The U.S. and Australia announced the beginning of negotiations on Monday over an agreement that would significantly boost law enforcement cooperation under a 2018 U.S. law meant to facilitate cross-border data access for investigators.

The move comes days after the U.S. signed a similar landmark agreement with the U.K. Under the 2018 Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data (CLOUD) Act, the agreement gives American and British law enforcement agencies the power to compel tech companies in either country to provide data relevant to investigations about serious crimes including terrorism, child sexual abuse and cybercrime.

If finalized, the agreement between the U.S. and Australia is expected to include similar terms.

"We have some way to go before the agreement is finalized, but once in place it will mean service providers based in the United States can respond directly to electronic data requests issued by our enforcement agencies under Australian law for data critical for the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of serious crime," said Peter Dutton, the Australian minister for home affairs.

Read more: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/cloud-act-us-australia-begin-talks-on-law-enforcement-data-sharing-agreement/