Who? 51 CEOs (chief executive officers) of some of the biggest tech and non tech companies in America have sent an open letter to Congress asking for a national data protection and privacy law to clear up the issues of consumer privacy in the US. The list of signatures includes CEOs of Amazon, Dell, IBM, Visa, Mastercard, and many more. These CEOs and many more across America makeup Business Roundtable and they’ve come up with what they believe is a solid framework for a National Consumer Privacy Law.
Why? Right now America is a mess with different data regulations being passed by different states. A lot of these companies previously mentioned are struggling to maintain the standards of the different laws and different states because of the scale of their businesses. The 51 CEOs are asking for one federal law to simplify issues regarding user privacy and data protection.
Reason for pause: According to ZDNet.com, many privacy advocates and even some tech CEOs are skeptical of these big tech companies, and believe they are not concerned with users’ interest but their own. If all regulations of data protection and privacy were controlled by one group or agency, that would make it easier to lobby against and would greatly impact the framework put in place. By having lots of different agencies and regulations it makes it harder for these companies to take advantage of vulnerable or uninformed consumers.
Takeaway: Everyone seems to be in agreement that people are starting to take their data protection and privacy more seriously, and something needs to be done to put power back in the peoples’ hands. Federal laws are needed to unify consumer privacy regulations and finally give the people legal rights over their data. However, keep an eye on the news to see just how much tech companies are influencing these laws. While a federal mandate is important, one that has been catered to the interests of those utilizing your data is not the outcome we are fighting for.