Recently, giant tech has come on the hit list due to the inappropriate use of consumer data. Legislation to make the Data Protection Agency has been presented by senator Kirsten Gillibrand. The charge of this new federal government agency is protecting the data of consumers. Also, investigating any misuse of that data.
Although this bill has very little chance of bipartisan support, it is still another foreshadow of the increased scrutiny placed upon companies that depend on the data of consumers for income
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) presented a bill named as Data Protection Act. This act sets out the establishment of a new government agency called the Data Protection Agency (DPA). The function of DPA is protecting consumer data and investigating any mishandling of that data.
Kirsten commented in a Medium blog post,
“Your data is highly valuable to many companies with unfamed reasons, who are looking to utilize your data for earning. And as a result, your very existence is being analyzed, divide, and sold for pay more, and it is very little you — or anyone, including the federal government — can do about it”.
According to Senator Gillibrand, the central role will include upholding data protection rules by the use of civil penalties, investigating the data privacy problems and share its findings.
The DPA would work to make sure the competition unbias over the internet by advocating the resources and tools that strengthen data protection and privacy.
Finally, the Data Protection Agency would inform Congress on privacy issues like deep fakes and encryption, represent the US at international forums as well.
“Our private data is under attack. Congress must create a data protection agency. Senator Gillibrand introduced a valiant, ambitious proposal to secure the privacy of Americans.”
Presently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the main agency responsible for securing customer privacy. But, it appears that the agency has been unsatisfactory in its responsibilities.
Facebook was sentenced with a $5 billion fine after the Cambridge Analytica scandal and other privacy-related issues. Nevertheless, in the end, it resulted in adding $10 billion to its market valuation.
Google was slammed with a $170 million following the violation of COPPA. However, much of the duties of the policing content intended to children now falls on the creators.
The reluctance of the Republican Party to make another government agency is one of the main obstacles that the Data Protection Act is going to face. Numerous rigid conservatives will bristle at the idea of making another government bureaucracy.
Still, the acts of nearly every American companies have subjected to increased check as of late. A few days earlier, the FTC initiated an antitrust inspection against many tech giants such as Google, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon over their purchases in recent years. The intended merger of T-Mobile and Sprint was in limbo for months due to the lawsuit by many states trying to block the deal.
But, Victor Marrero, the US District Court Judge just allowed the merger in a controversial ruling. Different privacy groups such as the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has given support to the Data Protection Act. EPIC’s Policy Director, Caitriona Fitzgerald admired efforts of Gillibrand and noted that,
“The United States faces a privacy crisis. Our private data is under attack. Congress must create a data protection agency. Senator Gillibrand has proposed a bold, ambitious proposal to protect the privacy of Americans.”