www.commerce.senate.gov

Watch here Wednesday morning 10am EST September 26, 2018  as Congressional Senate Commerce Committee talks data privacy with tech giants Twitter, Google, Amazon, Apple, AT&T, and Charter Communications Inc.

In the wake of Europe’s GDPR privacy law and recently passed privacy laws in several states, Google and other tech firms know that federal privacy laws in the US are due for an update.   Tech firms are lobbying the White House, trying to write federal privacy laws on their own terms.   

Case in point:  ahead of Wednesday’s Senate hearing, Google released their vision of a federal data privacy framework;  Google’s version of “privacy” means collecting and sharing your data without your consent,  and they call it “interoperable” data. (You have heard this interoperable data push before from Project Unicorn.)  Google also wants to “Define personal information flexibly”…which could give Google and the tech industry flexibility to wriggle out of laws prohibiting collection and marketing of personal information.

 AdWeek quotes Google’s proposed interoperable privacy framework:

“the framework urges for “global interoperability” that allows for data to be shared and processed outside the country easily, discouraging regulation that would allow individuals “to control every aspect of data processing.”

The framework can be read in full here and a few excerpts below:

“Organizations must provide appropriate mechanisms for individual control, including the opportunity to object to data processing where feasible in the context of the service. This does not require a specific consent or toggle for every use of data; in many cases, the processing of personal information is necessary to simply operate a service.” [no consent]

“Encourage global interoperability.  Mechanisms allowing for cross-border data flows are critical to the modern economy.   Organizations benefit from consistent compliance programs based on widely shared principles of data protection. Countries should adopt an integrated framework of privacy regulations, avoiding overlapping or inconsistent rules whenever possible. Regulators should avoid conflicting and unpredictable requirements, which lead to inefficiency and balkanization of services and create confusion in consumer expectations. In particular, geographic restrictions on data storage undermine security, service reliability, and business efficiency. Privacy regulation should support cross-border data transfer mechanisms, industry standards, and other cross-organization cooperation mechanisms that ensure protections follow the data, not national boundaries. ” [Emphasis added]

Data interoperability means sharing your data, without your consent, with other organizations, even other countries.

What could possibly go wrong with syncing and sharing your data across devices, with third parties, across companies and government agencies, even across countries?  You’re comfortable with third parties reading your email and seeing personal photos, right?

Here are just a few reasons for concern:

Also missing in Google’s interoperable privacy proposal: there are no penalties for tech companies who misuse consumer data.  (Hint, GDPR is HUGE on the penalties… and Google and the other tech firms know it.)

So, as the world awaits bigtech’s testimony in front of Congress, no moms and dads or teachers are invited, (no privacy advocates allowed) Google will apparently admit to mistakes made, and then move straight ahead with proposing your data be shared and interoperable.     Nope. Not good enough Google.

Americans expect and deserve privacy laws with CONSENT for data collection and processing and strong penalties for data misuse. 

As Michelle Malkin writes,

“Message to Congress: Allowing Google to dictate “frameworks” for education information grabs is like letting the fox guard the henhouse. Parents have a right to know — and the right to “NO” — when it comes to protecting their children’s privacy. Anything less is capitulation to kiddie data predators.”

 

Senate Commerce Committee
Chairman John Thune @SenJohnThune
Ranking Member Bill Nelson @SenBillNelson

10am EDT, Sept. 26, 2018 Senate Hearing

 

 

 Who will reign in Google and Big Tech? All of us. The People.

 

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Cheri Kiesecker

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