Press Release

Senate Releases Principles for Comprehensive Privacy Legislation

November 18, 2019 , , , ,

Today, Democrats across four key Senate committees (Commerce, Judiciary, Banking, HELP) released a Privacy and Data Protection Framework, a set of core principles that should serve as the baseline for any comprehensive federal privacy and data protection legislation. 

Specifically, the principles establish data safeguards, seek to enhance competition, strengthen consumer and civil rights, and create an enforcement regime that demands corporate accountability and allows both states and individuals to seek remedies for violations of their privacy rights.

The following can be attributed to Dylan Gilbert, Policy Counsel at Public Knowledge:

“The Privacy and Data Protection Framework released today sends a clear message that Senate Democratic leadership, including ranking members of the relevant Committees and longtime leaders on privacy issues, are committed to crafting comprehensive federal privacy legislation that provides strong protections for consumers. Whether it’s health care, banking, shopping, social media activity, or communications, all consumers and users should expect that their right to privacy is fully protected by the law and strongly enforced.

“We welcome Senate Democratic leadership’s commitment to protect consumers and users against the broad range of harms that can arise through abusive data practices, ranging from physical and financial injury to lost opportunity and unfair discrimination. We applaud the inclusion of data safeguards that go beyond notice and choice, such as data minimization and security requirements. We likewise applaud the inclusion of principles to spur competition, such as data portability, which when coupled with interoperability can counter the network effects that can create barriers to entry for innovative new online services. In addition, we are glad to see a commitment to strengthening and protecting not just individual consumer rights, but civil rights as well, to advance equal opportunity. Finally, and critically, the Framework demands meaningful corporate accountability and a robust enforcement regime that allows states to enforce the law and protect consumers, as well as a private right of action to permit consumers to protect themselves.

“The overwhelming majority of Americans believe that the government needs to protect consumers and provide guardrails for how businesses can use personal data. We look forward to working with all stakeholders to pass truly comprehensive federal privacy legislation that protects all Americans’ fundamental right to privacy.”