Trump administration issues call for public feedback on data privacy approach

Trump administration issues call for public feedback on data privacy approach
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The Trump administration wants the public’s perspective on its approach to consumer data privacy protection.

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On Tuesday, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration agency said that it is seeking input in its privacy plan to address the growing challenges that comes “as technology becomes more complex, interconnected, and integrated into our daily lives.”

“The Trump Administration is beginning this conversation to solicit ideas on a path for adapting privacy to today’s data-driven world,” said NTIA head David Redl.

The administration's proposed approach currently includes transparency in data collection policies, strong control for users over their own data and accountability for user data that companies hold.

The administration’s solicitation comes after a surge in interest about how consumer data is collected and treated over the past year.

Facebook, and the technology industry as a whole, came under severe criticism when it was discovered research firm Cambridge Analytica improperly obtained vast amounts of user data.

The public, regulators and lawmakers all scrutinized how major companies collect and monetize user data, which culminated with Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergMerkel named Harvard commencement speaker The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by T-Mobile — Congress to act soon to avoid shutdown Hillicon Valley: Zuckerberg denies selling 'anyone's data' | UK Parliament releases more Facebook docs | Canada reportedly arrests Huawei CFO | Fallout from Marriott hack | Cuba rolls out internet service for mobile users MORE testifying in back to back Congressional hearings on the matter.

California recently passed its own set of strong privacy rules, adding to the pressure for the federal government to come up its with own set of national guidelines.

Despite the industry’s initial resistance to new privacy regulations, technology lobbying groups embraced the new guidelines on Tuesday.

“This is a positive step toward modernizing our laws, so they better align with user expectations and enable the technology driving our future,” said Dean Garfield, President of the Information Technology Industry Council, a lobbying group that represents the interest of companies such as Apple, Amazon and Facebook.

The Software & Information Industry Association, another tech lobbying group, said that it was “pleased” with the NTIA’s call for public comment.