A clear message from voters this election? More privacy


As the most Significant results of the 2020 election are in flux, with voters in California and Michigan on Tuesday approving new privacy laws: California’s Prop 24, which expands the provisions of the 2018 privacy law, and Michigan’s Prop 2, which Consolidates orders to pieces for a requirement in search of police. Search warrant before electronic data is seized.

Strengthening privacy is one of the few credibly bipartisan efforts in modern politics, but two measures broke traditional alliances on privacy: the ACLU opposed the California proposal, while police chiefs supported Michigan’s measure. If those politics are any indication, the secrecy in the post-2020 landscape will be heterogeneous, repetitive, surprisingly bipartisan, and very complex.

Prop 24 of California is the successor of the California Consumer Rights Act of California Privacy Rights Act, 2018. In parallel to Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation, the CCPA has left many privacy advocates unhappy with the flaws that Facebook, Google, and anonymous data brokers have from escaping.

The CCPA exempted many forms of targeted advertising, essentially allowing the collection and sharing of personal user data without consent — precisely the kind of activity that the law intended to abolish. The CCPA left the enforcement entirely to the already overbridge state attorney general, a concession that created an ongoing rift between two of its authors, Mary Stone Ross and Alastair Mecktgart. (Mechtgart supported CPRA, which Ross opposed.)

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Companies have many ways of making profits by collecting and accessing our data. Some sales involve money to exchange hands directly. The law approved on Tuesday targets companies that once were able to avoid regulation by claiming “shares”, but not “selling” the data. CPRA combines the concepts of data sharing, selling and demonetization. It requires companies to tell what they are collecting from users and with whom they are selling or sharing data, and this requires them to allow users to opt out of collecting their data , Whether it is “literal” or not.

CPRA creates a new category of sensitive personal information (SPI), including race, sexuality, religion, and health data. If they plan to collect, share, or sell SPI, users should disclose to users. Once notified, users can prevent companies from sharing SPI. It also allocates $ 10 million to a new California Privacy Protection Agency that will enforce the law.

Finally, the language of the 2018 law left the door open for companies, requiring users to select tracking from each site rather than end tracking with a swoop. CPRA allows users to employ a global opt-out, such as the Do Not Track tool, but also to selectively allow tracking.

Privacy advocates who oppose CPRA see it as one step forward, two steps back, with many examples. Enforcement does not begin until 2023, businesses with less than $ 25 million in revenue are exempt, credit reporting giants such as Experian and Equifax are exempt from most of its provisions, and companies still opt for certain perks or exemptions from consumers Can not Share data.

This last concession is particularly controversial. The Electronic Frontier Foundation and ACLU of Northern California, both defenders of privacy for generations, cited for why they have opposed Prophet 24. Both worry that it may encourage a “pay for privacy” structure that encourages people to hand over their data for cash. And discounts. This can be particularly damaging to communities of color, ACLU argued in an October blog post, as vulnerable users will be forced to exchange their data for lower prices, while more privileged users decline. can do. This contradicts the security measures brought by the new SPI distinction.

CPRA’s biggest proponents, including Carmen Beller, executive director of Consumer Watchdog, acknowledge that the law is not perfect, but develops a new model for stronger privacy protections.

“I think it would be good to win the whole battle in one, but rarely, if it happens in the real world,” says Balber, adding that the law is specifically written for future amendments. “I think maybe the model we’re going to see [privacy] Countrywide Reform. “

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