On April 22, a new bill, known as the Cyber Privacy Act, was introduced in the House. Its contents are pretty brief and its purpose seems to be to utilize a DMCA type take-down approach for private data on public websites. So, under the Act, individuals who are not pleased with their private info being made public online, can contact the website owner to request the info be removed from the site. If the owner does not comply, it could be considered an unfair or deceptive act or practice in accordance with FTC regulation. The bill defines personal information as “any information about an individual that includes, at a minimum, the individuals name together with either a telephone number of such individual or an address of such individual.”
As pointed out by the Bureau of National Affairs’ E-commerce and Tech Law blog, this bill is undoubtedly riddled with issues since it does not address situations where private information could or should reasonably be public or address free speech concerns. While the bill may be subject to numerous changes or simply die away, this type of legislation does underscore the growing importance for exploring insurance protection for violations of privacy regulations and laws.
Also underscoring the need for insurance for violation of privacy regs, is a new draft of legislation for online privacy. Within it, are requirements for disclosing privacy practices; opt-out guidelines for sharing an individual’s information; and parameters for disclosing information to un-affiliated third parties. Like the Cyber Privacy Act, the FTC would have responsibilities for enforcing the proposed measures, if enacted.