How the GDPR Will Affect Private Funds’ Use of Alternative Data

The E.U.’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which took effect May 25, 2018, primarily affects investment managers and private funds that are based in the E.U. The GDPR’s restrictions on the processing of “personal data” of individuals in the E.U., however, may affect managers and funds that are located outside the E.U. if they process the data of individuals located in the E.U. in connection with the offering of services to those individuals. Because more funds are using alternative data in their operations – notably in driving their trading strategies and making investment decisions – the GDPR may impact how these funds obtain and use alternative data if that data contains what is arguably considered the personal data of individuals in the E.U. To help readers understand the potential impact of the GDPR on funds’ use of alternative data, the Hedge Fund Law Report interviewed Peter D. Greene, partner and vice-chair of the investment management group at Lowenstein Sandler. This article presents his insights. For more from Greene, see our three-part series on the opportunities and risks presented by big data: “Acquisition and Proper Use” (Jan. 11, 2018); “MNPI, Web Scraping and Data Quality” (Jan. 18, 2018); and “Privacy Concerns, Third Parties and Drones” (Jan. 25, 2018).

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