Online privacy debate heats up
From legislators to regulators to consumer and privacy advocates, the public policy debate about the future of online privacy is heating up. Over the past year, a number of new proposals and hearings have taken place to examine the collection and use of consumer information. Policy makers are attempting to find the right balance of encouraging online innovation while protecting personal information.
Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) held a series of day-long roundtable meetings to examine the privacy challenges created by new technology. Part of the discussion focused on the business practices of data brokers, particularly how consumer information is used. The roundtable meetings covered a wide array of topics, from social networking to online advertising and mobile marketing, and brought together representatives from business, academics and consumer groups. The FTC is now working on a report that will outline the issues and concerns raised during the series and make a number of recommendations for Congress to consider when drafting new privacy laws.