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Big data has skirted the rules for too long

For decades now, huge tech companies have exploited every innovation to cut into Americans' privacy and commodify our actions. They rake in billions of dollars without sufficiently protecting your data.

But we know far too little about how our data is collected, how it's used, or how it's shared. And, as it stands now, we have very little control over it.

The companies that profit off our data have so far denied any suggestion that they need to follow guidelines besides infinite profit, and they've managed to avoid nearly all accountability when their systems fail and Americans' privacy is compromised.

Some lawmakers shy away from taking on Big Tech, but I'm honored to be considered the sheriff laying down the law in the wild west of internet data collection.

Recently, I introduced the Consumer Data Protection Act to protect users' control over our data and to hold corporate bad actors accountable.

The bill's key provisions:

  • Create a Do Not Track system, which would bar all companies from sharing or selling a user's personal data without explicit permission;
  • Establish minimum privacy standards and require companies to publish yearly Data Protection Reports;
  • Impose strict penalties on companies and their executives who've abused consumer trust and lied about user privacy;
  • Require companies to assess the algorithms that process consumer data to examine their impact on accuracy, fairness, bias, discrimination, privacy, and security.

It's a powerful bill, designed to give consumers radical transparency, to provide new tools to control our information, and to create tough rules with real teeth to punish companies and individuals that abuse Americans' most private information.

Corporations are taking advantage of consumers, profiting off our privacy without answering to anyone. I will never stop fighting to protect Americans' right to control our data. I'll keep you updated as the issue develops.


Posted on April 4, 2019.

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Meet Ron Wyden

Ron Wyden & Jeff Merkley at a health care rallyRon Wyden is a champion for our progressive values -- standing up for consumers and the middle class, fighting for digital privacy and an open internet, protecting our planet and Oregon's special places, and always insisting on human rights and equality for all.

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