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CDT Welcomes Bipartisan Federal Privacy Legislation Proposal

The Pallone-McMorris Rodgers-Wicker compromise is a “hopeful first step” toward a comprehensive bill

WASHINGTON – The Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) welcomes the bipartisan discussion draft privacy legislation announced today by U.S. Reps. Frank Pallone (D-NJ-6), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA-5) and U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS).

Alexandra Reeve Givens, CEO and President of CDT, says:

“This draft shows that there is a bipartisan path forward on long-overdue legislation to protect consumers’ privacy. Americans want and desperately need legislation to protect their personal data and promote trust in the online world. While it’s not perfect, the draft is a hopeful first step. We urge Congress to move forward with the legislative process and pass legislation by the end of this year.

CDT has long advocated for a strong federal privacy law that protects users’ digital rights. We recognize that there will be negotiations that require difficult trade-offs, but now is the time for that work to happen. We look forward to working with Congress and partners committed to protecting Americans from the misuse of their personal data.”

The draft bill includes important protections such as a requirement for companies to minimize the data they collect, limitations on uses of that data, and individuals’ rights to access, correct, delete, and port their data. The bill also requires large companies to assess the harms their use of algorithms might cause people and to take steps to mitigate those harms. Importantly, it includes civil rights language to protect against discriminatory or biased use of data. CDT is continuing to review these and other provisions, in anticipation of future discussions.