|The momentum may be growing for Congress to finally enact federal privacy legislation.
At a recent press briefing, Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) said that the U.S. House of Representatives would convene bi-partisan roundtables to discuss federal privacy legislation. She said that the panel will invite stakeholders with different views to discuss privacy issues including “preemption and access to courts, data minimization and use limitations, anti-discrimination, and others.” Other participants set a goal of passing a federal bill by the end of 2022. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Representative Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) said state-level privacy actions are making a federal standard even more necessary. The AAF-supported Privacy for America tweeted, “We applaud @RepSchakowsky announcement today that House lawmakers will hold a series of bipartisan roundtables on the need for comprehensive federal privacy legislation. Americans deserve rules that prohibit harmful data practices, regardless of the state in which they live.”
In a May 9 editorial on data privacy legislation, The Washington Post said “a commitment last week by key legislators to get comprehensive regulations on the books by the end of 2022, even if doing so requires some compromise, is promising,” and argued that a failure to do so would be “embarrassing.”
To this point at least seven bills have been introduced in Congress addressing data privacy generally, with more targeting narrower issues such as children’s privacy, contact tracing, financial, health or location privacy and multiple bills addressing Section 230 reform and social networks and platforms more generally.
The AAF will continue our work with Privacy for America to urge Congress to enact reasonable privacy legislation that establishes a nationwide standard giving consumers strong protections while still enabling companies to use data in a trustworthy way and preserving the benefits that come with the responsible use of data.