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Commercial privacy bill of rights aimed to protect people on the internet.

There are currently no rules set in place as it relates to the privacy of individuals and how their personal information is used and shared on the internet. 

A new privacy bill introduced on Tuesday would establish rules requiring accountability from internet companies that utilize the private information of individuals.  

The bill would establish a regulatory framework for gathering personal data about users on sites like Facebook and Google.   
Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) are spearheading a measure that would force companies to explain how they collect information and what they do with it.

"Consumers want to shop, browse and share information in an environment that is respectful of their personal information," McCain said at a news conference. "Our legislation sets forth a framework for companies to create such an environment and allows businesses to continue to market and advertise to all consumers, including potential customers."

The new bill, backed by the Obama administration, may also make it harder for sites to use personal information to target and create profiles on individual internet users.

Commercial Privacy Bill of Rights [PDF] would provide consumers with more control over their personal information and how that data is collected and shared with third parties.

Companies would need an individual's consent to collect names, e-mail addresses, and credit card numbers if the bill becomes law.  They would also need consent to collect information about religion, sexual identity, medical conditions and other sensitive information.  An offer to opt out of data collection would be required for users as well.

"Our bill seeks to respect the ability of businesses to advertise, while also protecting consumers' personal information," said McCain.

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Just what the internet needs!
By ZachDontScare on 4/13/2011 3:38:25 PM , Rating: 2
This is just what the internet needs! Lots of little new laws and red tape to increase costs and dampen growth. Soon the only companies that will be able to afford to comply with all the legal requirements will be larger companies, driving smaller, more diverse publishers out of business. Hurray for McCain and Kerry, friends of they corporate cronies!

Here's a thught, if you dont like advertisers targetting you, dont put any of your information online. Problem solved.

RE: Just what the internet needs!
By Jaybus on 4/14/2011 3:15:05 PM , Rating: 2
No. The Internet needs to be treated like the communications medium that it is. What if Verizon categorized their customers based on words they used in text messages, then sold the lists to advertisers? Would your solution to that then be "if you don't like advertisers targeting you, then don't use a cell phone?" Of course not.

Money talks. The current non-functional opt-out methodology should be replaced with an opt-in only method. In other words, companies should be legally bound to keep your info private unless you specifically opt-in to allowing it to be sold. That would make them liable for allowing your info to be leaked without your knowledge, thus exposing them to a civil law suit. If people could sue them for leaking their info, I guarantee far fewer companies would be willing to risk selling their customer lists. The cost of those lists still available would go way up. Spamming would be far less profitable, because the cost of their leads would sky rocket.

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