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Policy

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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01 November 2019

European Commission Provides Important Guidance on Qualification and Classification of Software Under New Medical Devices Regulations

The European Commission’s Medical Devices Coordination Group (MDCG) has published a much-anticipated guidance on the qualification and classification of software devices as medical devices (MDSW)1  under the new Medical Devices Regulation (MDR) and In Vitro Diagnostic Regulations (IVDR) (the Guidance, available here). The Guidance seeks to provide clarification to medical software manufacturers with respect to (i) when software is considered a device (qualification) and (ii) what risk category the device falls into (classification).

Under the currently applicable rules, supported by guidance set out in MEDDEV 2.1/6,2 most software devices are classified as low risk. However, the new classification rules set out in the MDR, in particular Rule 11, significantly change the classification of MDSW, with many software devices to be generally considered medium- or even high-risk devices.

Here we examine which areas have been clarified by the Guidance and which topics remain open to interpretation.

(more…)

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31 October 2019

The Final Countdown: What You Need to Know About the CCPA and its Draft Regulations Before January 1

Companies doing business in California or with Californians must be ready to comply with the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) by January 1, 2020 – less than three months away. However, as businesses were putting the finishing touches on their compliance efforts, the California legislature amended the law and the Attorney General proposed a round of very significant regulatory requirements. Now businesses find themselves making last-minute adjustments as the deadline approaches.

Please join us for a discussion that highlights the key takeaways from the recent CCPA amendments and proposed regulations, identifies the steps companies should be taking to meet these new obligations, and provides benchmarks for how companies are addressing key issues surrounding the CCPA.

(more…)

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29 October 2019

Observations from Albania: the 41st Annual International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (October 23-24, 2019)

UK ICO Commissioner Liz Denham, who serves as Conference Chair, welcomed attendees at the public session and provided a brief summary of what transpired at the Commissioners’ closed door sessions. She noted that “privacy” has gone “mainstream.” People around the world expect more information about how their data is used. She stressed the importance of future international collaboration and regulatory cooperation to develop shared strategies and tactics “to protect people from big companies.”

Commissioner Denham also highlighted the increased focus on the role of data protection as a relevant consideration in competition analysis by international regulators. She noted that the International Privacy Commissioners’ Conference, and the ongoing assembly of global regulators, resolved to be more transparent in the future with respect to the regulated community and other interested parties. Finally, she hinted that a new name for the group would be announced before the 2019 conference concludes.

(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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15 October 2019

China Implements Regulation Increasing Protections for Children’s Personal Data

On 22 August 2019, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) announced the implementation of the Online Protection of Children’s Personal Data Regulation (儿童个人信息网络保护规定), (“the Regulation”) which came into force on 1 October 2019. The Regulation comprises a list of rules which seek to ensure the safety of children’s personal data and promote a healthy upbringing for children.

This constitutes the latest step in China’s drive to sophisticate its data protection regime and adds to legislation under the framework of the Cybersecurity Law, implemented in 2017. It contains similarities to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) in the U.S. and the GDPR in the EU.

As there is no official English translation of the Regulation, this article summarises its key points.

(more…)

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10 October 2019

California Attorney General Releases Proposed CCPA Regulations

Earlier today, the California Attorney General ended months of anticipation by releasing the text of his proposed California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) regulations.  Comments on the proposed regulations are due by December 6, 2019, and the Attorney General’s office will hold public hearings on the regulations on December 2 (Sacramento), December 3 (Los Angeles), December 4 (San Francisco), and December 5 (Fresno).

(more…)

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02 October 2019

Part 2 Proposed Rule Seeks to Reduce Barriers to Coordination of Care for Substance Use Disorders

In an effort to reduce barriers to coordination of care, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) is considering changes to Federal restrictions on the sharing of substance use disorder (“SUD”) records.  The proposed changes would modify 42 C.F.R. Part 2 (“Part 2”) regulations that place restrictive conditions on the disclosure of SUD patient records—limitations that go above and beyond Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) restrictions.

The barriers imposed by these rules—which have been in place since the 1970s—have become the focus of particular attention in light of the opioid crisis, as members of Congress and other stakeholders have raised concerns about how the Part 2 statute and implementing regulations may inhibit efforts to respond and coordinate care.  Members of Congress have called for reform, but have been unsuccessful at seeking legislative fixes thus far.

(more…)

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