Business minister can offer no guarantees over Nets

A united parliamentary opposition once more put the sale of the payment service Nets on the spot at a parliamentary hearing on March 13

March 14th, 2014 2:11 pm| by admin
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The bids are in and the sale of Nets is just around the corner as a united opposition across the aisle disagreed with Business Minister Henrik Sass Larsen (S) that the sale of Nets would not make personal information less secure.

“It makes a difference whether counterpart on the other side of the table is Danish or an American or Chinese private equity fund,” said Hans Christian Skibby (DF).

The fact that two of the five bidders for Nets are American have in the previous months got several experts to raise concerns. The US Patriot Act enables the American authorities to get information from American companies to a much larger extent than possible under Danish law. Nets has access to sensitive personal information as the company administers the mayor Danish payment card, Dankort, and the login to most public netservices, NemID.


No guaranty for personal information

Sass Larsen admitted that there was not any guarantee that the American authorities would not demand sensitive information from Nets, if the new owner turned out to be American. However, he was convinced that this would not happen.

”There is no reason to believe that the Americans will demand the sensitive information,” Sass Larsen said. He referred to that he had not heard of any problems in connection with American ownership of other companies such as the tele company, TDC.

However, Michael Budolfsen, vice chairman for the bank employees in Finansforbundet,did not agree.

“There will be a whole other legal regime, if Nets is bought by a buyer from a country far away, for example the United States,” Michael Budolfsen said to DR on February 13.

We got to know

Sass Larsen would look into whether the Danish authorities would be informed if sensitive information was handed over to for example the American authorities. Frank Aaen (EL) was just sorry that the sale would be over before they heard the result of the investigation.