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Privacy

House Subcommittee Approves Bill Banning Robocalls, Advancing Popular Measure to Full Committee

WASHINGTON, June 25, 2019 — Following the Federal Communications Commission’s recent order against robocalls, for added measure the House Energy & Commerce Committee Communications Subcommittee voted on Tuesday to approve a legislative measure against robocalls. The bill, known as the “Stopping Bad Robocalls Act,” will require the FCC to revise rules under the Telephone Consumer… Keep Reading

Privacy/Senate/Social Media

Bipartisan Group of Senators Stoke Fears About Google’s Neutrality and Influence in 2020 Election

WASHINGTON, June 25, 2019 — Fears about Google’s potential ability to influence the upcoming 2020 election ran rampant at a Senate hearing on Tuesday. That, coupled with allegations that the search engine giant inappropriately benefits from federal protections against liability, created a pressure cooker environment for Google’s witness before the Commerce Communications, Technology, Innovation and the… Keep Reading

Broadband Roundup: Transparency for Tech Platforms, Fiber in American Fork and Mountain Connect

Axios is reporting that Sens. Mark Warner, D-Va., and Josh Hawley, R-Mo., plan to introduce The Designing Accounting Safeguards to Help Broaden Oversight and Regulations on Data Act (DASHBOARD). The measure would require tech company to better explain to consumers what they are giving up when they share their personal information with big tech platforms… Keep Reading

China’s Digital Payment System is Simple and Ubiquitous, But Unlikely to Catch on in U.S.

WASHINGTON June 17, 2019 – In spite of an advanced smartphone-based payments system that is widely adopted in China, panelists at a Brookings Institute event on Monday expressed skepticism that such a system would become popular in the United States. More and more people in are exclusively using payment platforms such as Alipay and WeChat… Keep Reading

FCC/Privacy

Robocall Anger Will Force Calling Companies to Adjust Expectations, Says FCC Enforcement Bureau

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2019 — Companies whose legally-placed robocalls are blocked under the June 6 order of the Federal Communications Commission may need to adjust their perception of consumer expectations, a top Enforcement Bureau chief at the Federal Communications Commission said last week. Indeed, the popular backlash against robocalls is forcing all facets of the… Keep Reading

Among Their Many Ills, Critics Say Google and Facebook Make It Difficult for Digital Media to Survive

WASHINGTON, June 11, 2019 — The practices of Google and Facebook were closely scrutinized at a House Antitrust Subcommittee hearing Tuesday, and the companies’ impact upon the digital news media came in for particularly stark criticism. Some said that these major tech platforms were making it difficult for other media companies to survive, speaking at… Keep Reading

Federal Communications Commission Votes to Allow Carriers to Block Robocallers By Default

WASHINGTON, June 8, 2019 — Telecommunications providers can now block robocalls by default, according to a Federal Communications Commission ruling on Thursday. In principle, the measure had bipartisan support. But Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel dissented in part because the order didn’t require phone service providers to offer call blocking for free. Commissioner Michael O’Rielly’s partial dissent… Keep Reading

Government Needs to Set Rules to Limit Hate Speech Online, Says New America Panel

WASHINGTON, June 5, 2019 – Further ratcheting up its call for government regulation of the technology industry, speakers at the New America's Open Technology Institute called for government rules to limit hate speech online. Doing so is necessary in order to solve the dichotomy of maintaining free speech while limiting hate speech online, said panelists… Keep Reading

Congress/Privacy

Privacy and Civil Liberties Board Considers Three Ways for Congress to Address Controversial Surveillance Program

WASHINGTON, June 1, 2019 - Congress needs a plan for how to proceed when certain provisions of the USA FREEDOM Act, including the controversial call detail records program, expires in December, said speakers at a public forum held by members of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board on Friday. According to Caroline Lynch, former… Keep Reading

Interactive Advertising Bureau Joins the Growing Number of Industry Lobbyists Calling for Privacy Legislation

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: The CEO and Executive Vice President of the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a trade group for digital marketers, argue in a Tuesday OpEd for "Do Not Track Plus" legislation. With civil society and lobbyists alike joining the chorus for privacy legislation, it's looking more and more likely that -- eventually -- online privacy… Keep Reading

Cybersecurity/NTIA/Spectrum

With Resignation of David Redl, NTIA Updates Biography for Now-Acting Administrator Diane Rinaldo

With the sudden resignation of National Telecommunications and Information Administrator David Redl on Thursday, the U.S. Commerce Department's NTIA has updated its web page for Diane Rinaldo, formerly the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information, and the now-acting administrator of the agency. From the web site: Diane Rinaldo was sworn in as Deputy Assistant Secretary… Keep Reading

Sen. Josh Hawley Accuses Facebook of Addiction and Calls Social Media Worth-Less

WASHINGTON, May 2, 2019 - Social media and technology platform companies are wasting the talents of a generation, addicting and impoverishing middle America, and even driving teenagers to commit suicide in record numbers, Sen. Josh Hawley said Thursday. In a blistering speech attacking Facebook, Google, and the supposed "crown jewel" of the American economy known culturally… Keep Reading

Chris Jordan: Preparing for Potentially Dire Consequences of California Consumer Privacy Act

The California Consumer Privacy Act passed into law in 2018 is scheduled to go into effect January 2020. It could potentially have dire consequences for unprepared businesses serving their customers especially when they demand to be forgotten. The new law affects everyone from internet service providers to mom-and-pop shops when it comes to privacy, data… Keep Reading

Alive to New Threats, Google Reorganizes its Public Policy Shop

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Google is beginning to enter into hunker-down mode. The company is finally alive to the grave new threats that it faces. They are two-pronged: More-intensive antitrust scrutiny, and regulation of privacy/AI/Section 230 free speech. As Drew Clark wrote about for a CATO Institute policy late last year, "Seeking Intervention Backfired on Silicon… Keep Reading

Privacy

At Silicon Flatirons, A Debate on Privacy Law and Economy Harm

At the Silicon Flatirons event at the University of Colorado, a heated (!) debate about economic harms, and how it should impact privacy law. 02/10/19 4:30pm - 5:30pm DEBATE: PRIVACY LAW SHOULD FOCUS ONLY ON ECONOMIC HARM Pierre de Vries — Moderator Spectrum Policy Initiative Co-director and Executive Fellow, Silicon Flatirons Danielle Citron Morton & Sophia… Keep Reading

California’s Privacy Legislation Will Force Changes in the Way Businesses Collect Personal Information in 2020

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: We've written about the California Consumer Privacy Act before in "European and Chinese Pressures are Squeezing Silicon Valley, Threatening a Global ‘Splinternet’. The fact of multiple states passing significant privacy legislation is one of the potential drivers for federal consideration of substantial privacy rules. Here, attorney Lauren Stickroth catalogs the various aspects… Keep Reading

House Republicans Grill Google CEO Sundar Pichai Over Alleged Political Bias

WASHINGTON, December 11, 2018 – The CEO of search engine Google came to Washington on Tuesday and politely rebutted all charges that the world’s largest search engine is biased against conservative viewpoints. In the calm and controlled voice of an engineer, CEO Sundar Pichai said, “Our products are built without any bias,” responding to a… Keep Reading

Ten Years After the Beginning of Broadband Data Collection Efforts, M-Lab Gathers to Celebrate

WASHINGTON, August 8, 2018 – Experts in broadband data analysis on Tuesday criticized internet service providers for overstating coverage in federal broadband data collection efforts, and for resisting cooperation that could increase network security. At an event commemorating the 10th anniversary of Measurement Lab, or “M-Lab,” held at the New America Foundation, experts spoke about… Keep Reading

U.S. is Falling Behind in Internet Influence to Europe, Russia and China, Cybersecurity Experts Tell Senate

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2018 - The U.S. is falling behind in internet regulation and risks losing the global internet leadership position to the EU, China, and Russia, some internet privacy experts said at a Senate subcommittee hearing on Tuesday. On July 31, the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet held a hearing to… Keep Reading

Are Facebook and Amazon Really Compliant with the Global Data Protection Regulation?

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Are Facebook and Amazon really GDPR compliant? Researchers used artificial intellence software to analyze Facebook and Amazon new GDPR policies. The AI tool found one-third of policy clauses to be “potentially problematic” or containing “insufficient information”, which could put the companies’ in violation of GDPR. Meanwhile, Google and Facebook asserted they are working… Keep Reading

European and Chinese Pressures are Squeezing Silicon Valley, Threatening a Global ‘Splinternet’

WASHINGTON, July 9, 2018 – The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation is raising the danger of the “splinternet” syndrome, as top tech companies prioritize international standards over American ones, warned experts at a June 28 event of the Federalist Society. Officials from Google, Microsoft, and cybersecurity company Endgame addressed growing cybersecurity concerns that international… Keep Reading

Digital Advertising Experts Square Off on Privacy Against Skeptical Members of Congress

WASHINGTON, June 21, 2018 - Top digital advertising experts defended the importance of data collection against a committee skeptical of ad companies’ ethics. With data privacy increasingly at the forefront of tech policy debate, a June 14 House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on the digital advertising ecosystem became a flashpoint for the debate between… Keep Reading

Europe/North America/Privacy

Is the European GDPR Incompatible With U.S. Privacy Law, Including the Recent U.S. CLOUD Act?

WASHINGTON, June 20, 2018 - Data privacy experts questioned the effectiveness of the European General Data Protection Regulation as a means of regulating international data privacy on the grounds that it may be incompatible with current U.S. policies. At the 2nd Annual Transatlantic Symposium on information communications technology and policy, industry and policy experts joined… Keep Reading

Blockchain Brings Distributed Computing to Automating More Than Simply Bitcoin

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Blockchain is beginning to be recognized as much more than simply the technology powering Bitcoin. As this understanding seeps into the popular consciousness, policy-makers will begin to recognize how significant this innovation is for distributed computing and automating processes - financial, transactional, logistical and legal. Shane Tews at AEI Ideas delves into… Keep Reading

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Began Testimony Before Senate Committee with an Apology for Company’s History

WASHINGTON, April 10, 2018 – After months of seemingly-unending scandal over his company’s role in the 2018 election, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg began his first of two days of testimony on Capitol Hill Tuesday by making it clear he was well aware of the laundry list of problems with the company he created 14 years… Keep Reading

Facebook Data Breach is Putting Social Networking and Dating Apps in the Cross-Hairs of Congress

WASHINGTON, April 5, 2018 — As Facebook users continue to learn more about how the social networking pioneer allowed third parties to gain access to contact information, lists of friends, interests, and other information, the companies behind another social networking app are beginning to face scrutiny over whether they allowed far more sensitive information to… Keep Reading

With Senators and Representatives Targeting Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg Likely to Visit Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON, March 23, 2018 – The odds that Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg will make an appearance on Capitol Hill to explain his company’s actions regarding the misuse of millions of Facecook users’ data by Cambridge Analytica – the “big data” company linked to President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign – just went up. After… Keep Reading

With Political Cyberattacks in the Background, Trump Administration Prepares Cybersecurity Review

WASHINGTON, July 6, 2017 — The threat of mass cyberattack has been forcing the Trump Administration to take precautionary steps and boost the profile of cybersecurity. And yet the Trump Administration hasn’t yet assembled a cohesive cybersecurity strategy after five months in office. Trump signed an executive order on May 11, and which the White… Keep Reading

Federal Trade Commission Workshop on Connected Cars Raises Issues of Data Breaches and Privacy

WASHINGTON, July 3, 2017 - Self-driving vehicles could reduce congestion, supplement public transit systems and help the elderly and disabled travel safely, said Jeffrey Massimilla, chief product cybersecurity officer of Product Cybersecurity for General Motors, at a Federal Trade Commission workshop on Wednesday. Maureen Ohlhausen, acting chairman of the FTC, said that most new cars… Keep Reading

Inaugural Meeting of CEO-Driven American Technology Council Seeks to Highlight Cyber-Security Protections

WASHINGTON, June 21, 2017 — President Donald Trump on Monday kicked off the White House’s “tech week” by calling for a “sweeping transformation of the federal government’s technology” while speaking during the first meeting of the American Technology Council. The effort of information technology company CEOs – which Trump called an “incredible group” during their… Keep Reading

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