By

Christopher Fonzone

12 November 2019

Comments Submitted on California Consumer Privacy Act of 2020—Initiative 19-0021

As submitted for the comment period on Initiatives – Active Measures for Initiative 19-0021 on November 8, 2019.

Dear Mr. Mactaggart,

As privacy practitioners, we share your passion and dedication to the development of information privacy and data protection law in the United States. We acknowledge your achievement in pushing for the enactment of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and contributing to the ongoing national conversation to advance privacy rights. Your commitment to these issues is clear, and we commend the seriousness of your work in addressing privacy rights in accordance with your vision.

We write in the spirit of constructive development of privacy regulation, and offer the following comments in the hope of contributing to the goal we share with you: improving the quality and effectiveness of U.S. privacy and data protection law while ensuring the continued innovation and flexibility that so benefit our society. Although we often advise the regulated community on privacy and data protection matters, the views expressed here are our own.

At the outset, we note that there are important improvements in your proposed initiative relative to the enacted CCPA. Many of your new initiative’s provisions could serve to move privacy and data security law in a positive direction. In this vein, we note the following: (more…)

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24 October 2019

CCPA In-Depth Series: Draft Attorney General Regulations on Verification, Children’s Privacy and Non-Discrimination

This post is the third in a three part series taking a deep dive into the five key articles of the Attorney General’s CCPA draft regulations: Article 2 on Notice to Consumers; Article 3 on Business Practices for Handling Consumer Requests; Article 4 on Verification of Requests; Article 5 on Special Rules Regarding Minors; and Article 6 on Non-Discrimination. Today we look at verification, children’s privacy and the non-discrimination provisions. Visit the CCPA Monitor for a collection of all our CCPA insights.

INTRO AND BACKGROUND. In the summer of 2018, the California Legislature drafted and passed the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in record time. Facing a procedural deadline for a ballot initiative, the Legislature acted with dispatch, as it did not want to add to the State Constitution, with its super-majority amendment requirements, many of the provisions that ultimately found their way into the CCPA. This abbreviated legislative process produced a bill with numerous gaps and anomalies, however. Businesses, consumer advocates, and privacy watchers have thus been eagerly waiting for over a year for the Attorney General to propose the regulations the CCPA requires him to promulgate.

On October 10, 2019, this wait finally ended. As laid out below, the nature and breadth of the Attorney General’s proposed regulations explain why they took so long to produce. Put simply, the proposed regulations are significant and will have substantial implications on businesses’ ongoing efforts to comply with the CCPA with less than three months left to go before the effective date. Indeed, even if they do not resolve all of the Law’s many ambiguities, they do provide helpful implementation guidance – along with surprising new requirements, some of which may questionably extend beyond the CCPA itself.

(more…)

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23 October 2019

CCPA In-Depth Series: Draft Attorney General Regulations on Consumer Requests

This post is the second in a three part series taking a deep dive into the five key articles of the Attorney General’s CCPA draft regulations:  Article 2 on Notice to Consumers; Article 3 on Business Practices for Handling Consumer Requests; Article 4 on Verification of Requests; Article 5 on Special Rules Regarding Minors; and Article 6 on Non-Discrimination.  Today we look at consumer requests.  Check back daily for the next installment, or visit the CCPA Monitor for a collection of all our CCPA insights.

Intro and Background.  In the summer of 2018, the California Legislature drafted and passed the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in record time.  Facing a procedural deadline for a ballot initiative, the Legislature acted with dispatch, as it did not want to add to the State Constitution, with its super-majority amendment requirements, many of the provisions that ultimately found their way into the CCPA.  This abbreviated legislative process produced a bill with numerous gaps and anomalies, however.  Businesses, consumer advocates, and privacy watchers have thus been eagerly waiting for over a year for the Attorney General to propose the regulations the CCPA requires him to promulgate.

On October 10, 2019, this wait finally ended.  As laid out below, the nature and breadth of the Attorney General’s proposed regulations explain why they took so long to produce.  Put simply, the proposed regulations are significant and will have substantial implications on businesses’ ongoing efforts to comply with the CCPA with less than three months left to go before the effective date.  Indeed, even if they do not resolve all of the Law’s many ambiguities, they do provide helpful implementation guidance – along with surprising new requirements, some of which may questionably extend beyond the CCPA itself.

(more…)

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22 October 2019

CCPA In-Depth Series: Draft Attorney General Regulations on Consumer Notice

This post is the first in a three part series taking a deep dive into the five key articles of the Attorney General’s CCPA draft regulations:  Article 2 on Notice to Consumers; Article 3 on Business Practices for Handling Consumer Requests; Article 4 on Verification of Requests; Article 5 on Special Rules Regarding Minors; and Article 6 on Non-Discrimination.  Today we look at consumer notice.  Check back daily for the next installment, or visit the CCPA Monitor for a collection of all our CCPA insights.

Intro and Background.  In the summer of 2018, the California Legislature drafted and passed the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in record time.  Facing a procedural deadline for a ballot initiative, the Legislature acted with dispatch, as it did not want to add to the State Constitution, with its super-majority amendment requirements, many of the provisions that ultimately found their way into the CCPA.  This abbreviated legislative process produced a bill with numerous gaps and anomalies, however.  Businesses, consumer advocates, and privacy watchers thus have been eagerly waiting for over a year for the Attorney General to propose the regulations the CCPA requires him to promulgate.

On October 10, 2019, this wait finally ended.  As laid out below, the nature and breadth of the Attorney General’s proposed regulations explain why they took so long to produce.  Put simply, the proposed regulations are significant and will have substantial implications on businesses’ ongoing efforts to comply with the CCPA with less than three months left to go before the effective date.  Indeed, even if they do not resolve all of the Law’s many ambiguities, they do provide helpful implementation guidance – along with surprising new requirements, some of which may questionably extend beyond the CCPA itself.

(more…)

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17 September 2019

Final California Consumer Privacy Act Amendments Bring Practical Changes (But Your Business May Now Be a California “Data Broker”)

After months of wrangling, the California legislature has finally passed a set of significant amendments to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), a sweeping data privacy and security law commonly referred to as “California’s GDPR” (Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation). Employee personal information and personal information obtained in business-to-business (B2B) interactions are now mostly out of scope. Personal information in credit reports and other data covered by the Fair Credit Reporting Act is also largely exempt. Only personal information that is “reasonably” capable of being associated with a consumer or household is subject to the act. And aggregate or deidentified information definitively does not qualify as CCPA personal information.

(more…)

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03 September 2019

Carpenter and Everything After: The Supreme Court Nudges the Fourth Amendment into the Information Age

*This article was first published by the American Bar Association Infrastructure and Regulated Industries in Summer 2019.

Every year, as the calendar turns to June, the legal community looks to the Supreme Court. Eager to get to the Term’s end, the Justices rush to complete all of the outstanding opinions. Since the most difficult and important cases usually take the longest to work out, they are typically the stragglers. June is thus the time when the “blockbuster” opinions are issued—the cases that law professors analyze in their tenure pieces and that law school students study, quite possibly for years to come.

(more…)

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11 June 2019

The CCPA Ripple Effect: Nevada Passes Privacy Legislation

With about half a year to go until the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)’s effective date, and with significant amendments still percolating to define the scope and impact of the CCPA come 2020, other states continue to consider whether to adopt new and broader privacy laws of their own, with Nevada recently taking the distinction of being the first to follow the CCPA trend.  While the scope and obligations of the Nevada law is significantly narrower than the CCPA and thus largely will align with current CCPA implementation projects, the new Nevada law does expand upon the CCPA in one particularly notable way—it moves the deadline to facilitate opt-outs of sales of personal information up to October 2019. (more…)

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29 May 2019

NYC Automated Decision-Making Task Force Forum Provides Insight Into Broader Efforts to Regulate Artificial Intelligence

More and more entities are deploying machine learning and artificial intelligence to automate tasks previously performed by humans.  Such efforts carry with them real benefits, such as the enhancement of operational efficiency and the reduction of costs, but they also raise a number of concerns regarding their potential impacts on human society, particularly as computer algorithms are increasingly used to determine important outcomes like individuals’ treatment within the criminal justice system.

This mixture of benefits and concerns is starting to attract the interest of regulators.  Efforts in the European Union, Canada, and the United States have initiated an ongoing discussion around how to regulate “automated decision-making” and what principles should guide it.  And while not all of these regulatory efforts will directly implicate private companies, they may nonetheless provide insight for companies seeking to build consumer trust in their artificial intelligence systems or better prepare themselves for the overall direction that regulation is taking.

(more…)

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18 March 2019

The New Congress Turns to an Old Issue – The Possibility of Comprehensive Federal Privacy Legislation

Even a few short years ago, it seemed unlikely that Congress would enact comprehensive privacy legislation. But a series of high profile data breaches; increasing concerns about data practices, particularly when connected to political micro-targeting; fears about the rise of autonomous, and potentially invisible, decision-making; and the passage of far-reaching foreign and now State privacy laws have all changed the zeitgeist. Congress has taken notice, and, for the past year, Data Matters has been closely following the Legislative Branch’s moves as it a federal privacy bill looks more likely than it has in a generation. (more…)

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12 March 2019

FTC Seeks Comment on Proposed Changes to its GLBA Safeguards and Privacy Rules

Over the last few years, States have enacted increasingly aggressive legislation concerning data privacy and security, raising concerns that companies will be subject to a patchwork of different standards.  Congress has recently taken notice, convening hearings on potential federal privacy legislation, with the possibility of preemption a hot topic during the hearings.  Last week, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) got into the act as well, releasing two notices of proposed rulemaking (“NPRM”) on potential changes to its the Standards for Safeguarding Customer Information (“Safeguards Rule”) and Privacy of Consumer Financial Information Rule (“Privacy Rule”) under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.  The proposed amendments – and particularly the proposed changes to the Safeguard Rule – signal the FTC’s desire to align its rules with those of key states and to further protect customer information held by financial institutions.

(more…)

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