The prospects for FTC Privacy Rules: Still a long road ahead

Andrew Smith and Yaron Dori of Covington discuss the Federal Trade Commission’s ambitious plans to regulate in the field of commercial data privacy.

In August of this year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM or Privacy ANPRM) to seek public comment on “commercial surveillance” practices that potentially harm consumers.(1) Specifically, the Privacy ANPRM broadly asks whether the agency “should implement new trade regulation rules or other regulatory alternatives concerning the ways in which companies (1) collect, aggregate, protect, use, analyze, and retain consumer data, as well as (2) transfer, share, sell, or otherwise monetize that data in ways that are unfair or deceptive.” More than 11,000 comments on the Privacy ANPRM were received before the public comment period ended on 21 November.(2)

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