Regulatory: The risks of neglecting privacy

Privacy concerns will likely result in a stricter legal and regulatory framework, and companies should act early to establish consumer protections

Do you recall the words of the President in the State of the Union address on the need for a new set of standards to protect personal privacy? In case you forgot:

“One measure of a truly free society is the vigor with which it protects the liberties of its individual citizens. As technology has advanced in America, it has increasingly encroached on one of those liberties--what I term the right of personal privacy. Modern information systems, data banks, credit records, mailing list abuses, electronic snooping, the collection of personal data for one purpose that may be used for another--all these have left millions of Americans deeply concerned by the privacy they cherish.

The administration’s proposed vehicle for implementing the proposed Privacy Bill of Rights is baseline privacy legislation enforceable chiefly by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), with a safe harbor for companies subscribing to binding privacy codes of conduct to be developed through a multi-stakeholder process. (Even before the enactment of such legislation, a multi-stakeholder group has begun meeting to develop a privacy code for mobile apps.)

Also this year, the FTC issued a report adding weight to the administration’s proposals and drawing particular attention to the largely unseen practices of data brokers. The FTC urged businesses to make privacy a “default setting.”

Contributing Author

author image

Christopher Wolf

Mr. Wolf leads the global Privacy and Information Management Practice at Hogan Lovells US LLP and is founder and co-chair of The Future of...

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.