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:

MEPs Call For Changes To Privacy Shield, Threaten Suspension

Brussels, BELGIUM — The European Parliament today passed a non-binding resolution calling for the suspension of the EU-US Privacy Shield framework by September 1, unless several improvements are made. The European Commission and the U.S. Administration will formally review the enforcement of the Privacy Shield in September. The Computer & Communications Industry Association has been…

-

Supreme Court Rules That Cell Site Location Information Has Fourth Amendment Protection

Washington — Law enforcement cannot access a criminal suspect’s cell site location information without a warrant based on probable cause, according to a Supreme Court ruling today. Carpenter v. United States examined whether the warrantless seizure and search of historical cellphone records, revealing the location and movements of a cell phone user over the course…

-

CCIA hosts Transatlantic Digital Economy Dialogue ahead of EU-US regulatory talks

On the eve of the EU-U.S. Information Society Dialogue, CCIA hosted the third edition of our Transatlantic Digital Economy Dialogue in Brussels on January 31. Speakers included Roberto Viola (Director-General, European Commission), Robert L. Strayer, (Deputy Assistant Secretary, U.S. Department of State) and Brendan Carr (Commissioner, FCC). American and European experts from industry, academia, civil…

-

Takeaways from Disrupter Series Hearing on The Internet of Things, Manufacturing, and Innovation

The Internet of Things (IoT) is already impacting and changing the global manufacturing landscape. On Thursday January 18, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection held a hearing as part of their Disrupter Series on IoT, Manufacturing and Innovation. Specifically, the Committee heard testimony from Rodney Masney, Vice President, Technology…

-