What is the Consumer Privacy Protection Act?
The bill does three main things:
- It requires companies to take steps to prevent security breaches;
- It establishes a broad definition of private information; and
- It requires large companies to give notice to consumers when there has been a privacy breach.
social security numbers;
financial account information;
online usernames and passwords;
unique biometric data, including fingerprints;
information about a person’s physical and mental health;
information about a person’s geolocation; and
access to private digital photographs and videos.
The Politics Behind the Consumer Privacy Protection Act
As with anything coming through the federal legislature these days, the question is whether this bill, which consumer protection advocates are praising, will have any chance to become law. The bill’s proponents seem confident. According to Senator Franken,
Others remain skeptical. According to Justin Brookman, of the Center for Democracy and Technology:
“They didn’t get a GOP co-sponsor, and that’s not a great sign. Still, having the bill out there is good for dialog on the issue.”
Federal law has not kept up with the pace of technology. Whether through the Consumer Privacy Protection Act or some other means, the federal government needs to update its policies to provide better protection to consumers’ online, private information.
Dani K. Liblang is a Consumer Protection Attorney at The Liblang Law Firm, P.C., in Birmingham, Michigan. She and her staff work to protect consumers against manipulative collections practices and identity thieves. If you or someone you know has been the victim of identity theft, contact The Liblang Law Firm, P.C., for a free consultation.