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Counterpoint: States should steer data privacy law

Jim Steyer | November 27, 2018

The American system of online privacy protection is broken. That is bad for adult consumers—and even worse for kids. As a parent and an educator, that terrifies me.

The genius of the American system of government is that it contains the solutions that we need to address this problem—in the states and territories. Our states have developed powerful, complex tools to protect consumers whose rights are being violated. 

Why states and not the federal government?  There are three key reasons.

  • First, the federal government has, despite decades of concerns, not even tried to lead on addressing privacy issues online (except for narrow issues such as protecting health information, or young children on certain sites and services.)  The federal government’s track record has been so bad that it fell to the European Union to pass the world’s first broadly based law protecting consumer privacy online. The federal government’s lack of interest on real privacy protections...
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