In six months the nation’s strongest privacy law, the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA), will take effect. Or will it?
As the weeks wind down, there is a frantic race to frame what could become a model for a national data-privacy law. A Sept. 13 deadline on final changes to the law’s wording has privacy advocates and state lawmakers concerned a watered-down version of the bill will emerge if tech companies have their way. Conversely, businesses insist the sweeping law needs tweaks and clarifications so they can effectively comply.
Regulations impacting business won’t take effect until the California Department of Justice publishes a Notice of Proposed Regulatory Action in Fall 2019. The regulations will provide guidance to businesses on how to comply.
“Tech has taken an anthill approach of supporting a number of amendments with carve-outs for businesses and changes in definition,” says Lee Tien, senior staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital-rights advocacy group. “I don’t see much prospect for CCPA getting any stronger.”
What has emerged from the legislative warfare are bills pushed through by an army of lawyers and lobbyists representing the tech industry’s interests, claim privacy advocates.
At least 40 bills have been introduced in Sacramento that would modify the CCPA. Most are dead, but several — all of which Tien claims will weaken CCPA — have passed one chamber of the state legislature.
Pictured: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg talks to staff at U.S. congressional hearings