CDD calls on Obama Adm. to seek strong privacy rules for Big Data/Urges FTC Rulemaking & End of Self-reg stakeholder process

By: Jeff Chester | Aug 5 2014

Today was the deadline for Comments to be filed in the President's Big Data and privacy proceeding.   CDD filed the attached comments, and also joined with a NGO coalition on thie issue representing the civil rights, consumer and privacy communities.  CDD's filing urged the following:

The Obama Administration should offer legislation that ensures its Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights framework actually provides individuals with the control over how their personal information is collected and used. Individuals should have the ability to make meaningful decisions about their information, regardless of whether it is collected by a social network, mobile operator, app network, financial institution, etc.Legislation should provide regulatory rulemaking authority to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on consumer privacy issues to develop these new rights. Legislation should require the FTC to conduct the necessary proceedings leading to a rulemaking within one year from the enactment of legislation. The same legislation should also call on agencies that currently have rulemaking authority, including the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to immediately initiate proceedings on consumer financial, telecommunications, and digital health privacy, respectively. Other agencies with sectorial authority on privacy issues not covered by the FTC and others should also be mandated to develop regulations.The current “multistakeholder” process convened by the NTIA should be replaced by the relevant agency rulemakings. The legislation should acknowledge the threats that much of Big Data-related collection pose to Americans today, and strongly state that it is in the best interests of the nation that businesses refrain from their current practice of ubiquitous data collection and profiling. It should accept that self-regulation has failed.The FTC, CFPB, FCC, and FDA should be mandated to report to the Nation, within six months after legislation is enacted, on how commercial Big Data practices are currently being used in ways that may be harmful to the public and not in the national interest. These reports should identify how current practices can discriminate against Americans, based on their race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, income status, age, residence, and other key variables.Based on these reports, the agencies will propose special regulatory safeguards as required to address sensitive data concerns.

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