Privacy

The Need for an R&D Roadmap for Privacy

August 1, 2012
| Reports

Effectively addressing privacy concerns in ways that do not stop innovation will require a mix of new technologies and policies to ensure data is properly safeguarded and consumers are protected. ITIF has proposed creating an R&D roadmap for privacy to help address consumer privacy concerns, better align R&D investments with strategic objectives, and enable more innovation. 

The FCC should let existing avenues of self-regulation and co-regulation be pursued instead of regulating software on mobile devices to allow for continued innovation and growth in this industry.

Rather than duplicate existing efforts, the FCC should allow existing avenues of self-regulation and co-regulation to be pursued. Given the rapid rate of change in this industry, where possible, the FCC should apply a light touch and rely on flexible industry codes of conduct, rather than more restrictive government regulations, to govern how information is used. The FCC should not extend its authority to regulate the software that is installed on mobile devices. The current uses of CPNI by carriers are appropriate and neither the FCC nor consumers advocacy group have identified any specific harms to consumers. While privacy is an important issue to consider, the potential negative impact of additional regulation on the mobile Internet, mobile devices, and mobile applications should be considered as well. The FCC should instead use its expertise to help identify issues that need attention and actively participate in existing multistakeholder efforts to improve consumer privacy.

ITIF Comments on Privacy and Security of Information Stored on Mobile Communications Devices

July 13, 2012
| Testimony and Filings

The FCC should not extend its authority to regulate the software that is installed on mobile devices. The current uses of CPNI by carriers are appropriate and neither the FCC nor consumers advocacy group have identified any specific harms to consumers. While privacy is an important issue to consider, the potential negative impact of additional regulation on the mobile Internet, mobile devices, and mobile applications should be considered as well. The FCC should instead use its expertise to help identify issues that need attention and actively participate in existing multistakeholder efforts to improve consumer privacy.

Source: Google to Pay $22.5M Fine in Privacy Case

USA Today
ITIF defended Google and warned the FTC's crackdown may discourage other companies from sharing more information about their privacy policies.

Whatever Happened to “No Harm No Foul”?

July 10, 2012
| Blogs & Op-eds

The FTC’s proposed settlement shows that the FTC is focusing its limited resources on penalizing companies for unintentional actions that do not result in any actual user harm rather than directing these resources at cases where users suffer real harm or companies intentionally tried to mislead users. As a result, this proposed settlement may discourage companies from fully disclosing details about their data handling practices in the future. 

Decoding the “Declaration of Internet Freedom”

July 3, 2012
| Blogs & Op-eds

Online activists have started promoting a new manifesto for the Internet and it's important to understand the undertones in what they've put forward as the "Declaration of Internet Freedom."

Bank Privacy Notices Cost Consumers Over $700M Annually

June 22, 2012
| Blogs & Op-eds

ITIF Senior Analyst Daniel Castro estimates that the Gramm-Leach-Bliley privacy notices cost $700 million annually and generate 171 million pounds of greenhouse gases. Congress should eliminate these privacy notices and only require banks to send these notices to customers who register their email address.