As the digital economy expands, more attention is being paid to the impact of data processing on consumers and how to maintain responsible and trustworthy treatment of personal information. Companies have responded to shifting consumer views and expectations about how data is collected and used online by developing new data transparency tools and controls. Policymakers are also seeking ways to ensure that data controllers exercise fair information practices to protect and empower users while also encouraging innovation and protecting economically vital flows of data, particularly across borders.

CCIA’s View

New technologies and data practices have stressed the traditional U.S. sectoral approach to protecting consumer privacy. In response, Congress should adopt a federal baseline consumer privacy law to ensure that consumers’ personal information is handled responsibly no matter where it is collected or who is processing it. This framework should set consistent transparency requirements, consumer controls, and accountability measures for data controllers, while empowering the Federal Trade Commission to carry out robust enforcement. Such a framework should be risk-focused, technology-neutral, and provide safe harbors and flexibility for organizations to make adjustments according to the needs of individuals and evolving technology.

Developing comprehensive and durable privacy rules requires balance. The desire to bring the power of government to bear on the issue is a strong one, but it must be set against the need to encourage innovation, unlock the incredible social value of big data, and not to infringe upon related values such as the freedom of speech. Overly prescriptive or onerous regulation risks creating high barriers to entry for new companies and may even prohibit the creation of beneficial new technologies and privacy protective techniques and services.

Most Recent Statements:

Draft Feinstein-Burr Anti-Encryption Bill Would Seriously Harm Security, Speech, and Innovation Online

Washington — A discussion draft of Senators Feinstein and Burr’s long-awaited encryption access bill was released late Thursday night. The “Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016” purports to require that digital service providers produce “intelligible data” in response to government demands pursuant to a court order, or provide “technical assistance” to achieve that end.…

-

CCIA Applauds Congressional Approval Of Judicial Redress Act

Washington – Congress gave final approval on legislation that will give European citizens additional privacy protections after the House and Senate reconciled the Judicial Redress Act Wednesday evening. The measure updates the Privacy Act to give citizens of some allied countries the right to review and correct inaccurate information about them held by federal agencies,…

-

CCIA Praises Introduction of Encrypt Act

Washington — Representatives Ted Lieu (D-CA) and Blake Farenthold (R-TX) introduced the ENCRYPT Act of 2016 today. The bill would prevent states from mandating or requesting weakened encryption, backdoors, or decryption from manufacturers and providers of consumer Internet devices and services. In the last year, law enforcement and intelligence community officials have sparked another debate…

-

CCIA Welcomes U.S. Senate Approval Of Judicial Redress Act

Washington – European citizens are a step closer to additional privacy protections after the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the Judicial Redress Act Tuesday night. The measure would give citizens of some allied countries the right to review and correct inaccurate information about them held by federal agencies. The House has already passed the bill, but…

-

CCIA Welcomes New EU-U.S. Data Transfer Framework

Brussels — Negotiators announced a political agreement today on a new “Safe Harbour” framework that will allow for commercial data flows between Europe and the United States.  Commissioner Jourová presented the agreement to the College of Commissioners today which gave it its “green light”. The Article 29 Working Party will examine the new agreement, called…

-