On January 1, 2014, California Assembly Bill 370 will go into effect, requiring operators of websites and other online services, including mobile applications, to provide new disclosures in their website privacy policies about online tracking.
On August 26, the California legislature passed AB 370, which would require commercial websites and other online services such as mobile apps to include language in their privacy policies disclosing whether the service uses third-party vendors to track users across a network of other websites or online services, and how the users can opt out of such tracking using a centralized “do not track” signal or other mechanism. If signed by the governor, as expected, this bill would apply de facto to most websites and mobile apps by virtue of their accessibility in California, and would require revision of many privacy policies as a result.
Today the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued its long-awaited privacy report, “Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: Recommendations for Businesses and Policymakers,” which is intended to articulate “best practices” for companies that collect and use consumer data, and to assist Congress as it considers new privacy legislation.
This blog entry contains a link to the full text of the Administration’s privacy proposal to be more fully unveiled later today at a White House event to which Hogan Lovells has been invited. Also here is news of the Digital Advertising Alliance announcement of a major Do Not Track initiative under which advertising networks will respect browser-based Do Not Track instructions.
Later today the White House will release its long-awaited privacy report entitled, “Consumer Data Privacy in a Networked World: A Framework for Protecting Privacy and Promoting Innovation in the Global Digital Economy.” The cornerstone of the report is a “Privacy Bill of Rights” aimed at improving consumers’ privacy protections and providing greater certainty to businesses, in order to foster innovation and growth in the Internet economy. The White House also announced that the companies responsible for the delivery of nearly 90% of online behavioral advertisements have agreed to honor consumers’ privacy choices made via Do Not Track technology on web browsers.
A recent New York Times article fueled the debate over whether the EU is more committed to the protection of personal privacy than the US. Hogan Lovells Privacy and Information Management practice co-director Chris Wolf responded in a Letter to the Editor of the Times, published today, along with that of Mark Rotenberg of the Electronic Privacy Information Center. This entry describes, links and quotes from the article and the exchange, and references the upcoming eG8 forum on the Internet (and privacy) in which Chris will participate, and where the issue of privacy cooperation will be addressed.
The FTC today released a long-awaited but preliminary Staff Report that examines the status of privacy law and enforcement by the agency and proposes a framework for a greater consumer privacy protections in the products and services developed by businesses. The Report continues an examination of current privacy protections and raises a series of specific questions on which public input is requested.
This blog entry contains a link to an interview with Forbes of the Hogan Lovells Privacy and Information Management practice leader Chris Wolf, touching on current hot topics in the area.