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Democrats plan to overhaul the treatment of their data



Photo: AP

Should companies like Equifax and Facebook be held responsible for protecting our personal information, as well as banks and hospitals? Should we expect the same control over data that we have given to Google as information we share with our doctor or lawyer?

A new bill introduced by the Senate Democrats on Wednesday is "Yes." Online businesses should have a similar responsibility for controlling and protecting Americans' private data. After all, as the argument argues, Mark Zuckerberg should have a similar responsibility to protecting your privacy as your doctor.

Although the legislation is new, this is not the case. Some legal experts have long argued that companies handling large amounts of data must be required by law to act responsibly. They call such companies information trustee .

Senator Brian Schatz, the lead author of the bill, says he wants something less dormant and complicated: "Data Care" is used instead of "Information Trustee" because it provokes too many legal connotations from outside.)

Jack Balkin, a professor of constitutional law in Yale, wrote in 2016 on this subject, as the law requires, physicians and lawyers – traditional trustees – are supposed to act in good faith and "out of pain of their practice permit", especially because of our interactions are inevitable with them We rely on them and in some cases have no say The confidentiality of some information, he says, is not only dependent on its content, but can be private by default due to a particular social relationship

In an article about information trustees for the Legal Professorship for Atlantik, Balkin and Harvard Jonathan Zittrain wrote in terms of Facebook, Google and Uber:

Like older trustees, these companies have become virtually indispensable. Like older trustees, these companies collect a lot of personal information that could be used to our detriment. And like older trustees, these companies have a much better ability to monitor than our own. As a result, many people in need of these services shrug their shoulders and decide to trust them. The important question, however, is whether these companies, like older trustees, are legally obliged to be trustworthy. The answer is that they should do that.

Introduced as the Data Care Act, the US Federal Trade Commission has issued new rules on the prosecution of fines against companies that abuse private information. Undertakings that hoard and trade in private information should adhere to fiduciary standards, including legal obligations, to maintain loyalty to consumers and to maintain their confidentiality. The latter is essential for third-party businesses

"People have the basic expectation that the personal information they provide on websites and apps is well protected and will not be used against them," Schatz said in a statement. "Just as doctors and lawyers are expected to protect and use the personal data they contain, online businesses should do the same."

The FTC is popular for this task, he said, because he admired the agency's functionality and its ability to remain impartial; This and because it is run by "hard – nosed regulators who know what they are doing and have not become a political lightning rod". Englisch: emagazine.credit-suisse.com/app/art…2934 & lang = en. Given the nature of the technology, a federal agency should lead the way, especially with regard to the complex jurisdictional issues that arise from Internet geography (for example, the physical location of Internet servers versus the location of users). Schatz argued that Congress, and not the FTC, should be the duty, but to determine what kind of business this bill will ultimately apply to. He noted that many brick-and-mortar stores also collect and use consumer information while not engaging in the type of data-sharing practices that are typical of companies like Facebook.

Schatz also said he sees his bill, which is currently sponsored by Co 14 other Democrats as a supplement and not necessarily as a substitute for other bills of his colleagues, which aimed to hold Internet companies accountable for handling user data , Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, for example, has recently launched its own draft bill, which is also heavily dependent on the FTC and would impose heavy fines and possibly even jail sentences for serious corporate violations.

"I think we are in a relatively strong bargaining position," Schatz told reporters. Internet companies, he said, "need something to move forward at federal level," otherwise the US privacy laws that he claims to "fear some fears," as found throughout California's comprehensive data protection law

In addition to treasure will be the Data Care Act by Democratic Senators, Michael Bennet, Tammy Duckworth, Amy Klobuchar, Patty Murray, Cory Booker, Catherine Cortez Masto, Martin Henry, Ed Markey Sherrod Brown, Tammy Baldwin, Doug Jones, Joe Manchin and Dick Durbin.

"Online platforms collect a huge amount of personal information about Americans – everything we buy and what our websites visit, our emails and where we go all day," Senator Klobuchar said in a statement. It does not name names and says that companies make billions from their data while "leaving Americans in the dark about how they are used".

"The Data Care Act will help by setting a duty of care for sensitive data to ensure that the FTC can hold companies accountable if they are unsuccessful," she said. "The digital space can not work at the expense of our privacy like the Wild West."

Senator Markey added, "In today's digital economy, personal information is everywhere and those who have access to sensitive information of Americans have a responsibility to do so Protect information and keep it secret. It is time for Congress to pass comprehensive data protection legislation, and the Data Care Act would be an important part of this effort. "


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