State Legislature's Magazine - Smile, the Camera's on You

Carl Szabo, a senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an association for online companies, says that because “the legislative process cannot move at the speed of technology,” the industry has recently published privacy guidelines for the use facial recognition. They recommend businesses: Be transparent about using the technology; ensure the data are kept secure; and give consumers some control over how that information is used.


ABC News - Who Inherits a Selfie? States Seek to Fill Privacy Law Gaps

Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an industry group that represents the interests of such companies as Facebook, Google and PayPal, said the revised legislation “balances the needs of the bereaved with the privacy interests of the account holders and the people with whom they corresponded.”



Also At: - Tech after death: Checking in on Delaware’s digital assets law

One side sees value in preserving privacy: “In the past two years, one of the things we have seen is service providers beginning to offer choice mechanisms,” explained Carl Szabo, NetChoice’s senior policy counsel. “Google is offering inactivity account manager [tools] and Facebook [is offering] legacy accounts. There’s also a new company called Directive Communication Systems that works with citizens and trusts and estate attorneys to create a directive in their will, that says, When I die talk to DCS about what happens to my digital accounts.”


Broadcasting & Cable News - Agreement Struck on Facial Recognition Best Practices

“Today proves that stakeholders from different worlds with diverse priorities can come together to develop industry guidelines that promote innovation and protect personal privacy,” said Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel for NetChoice. “From customer service to finding lost dogs, to photo organizing, developers of facial recognition applications will now have ‘rules of the road’ as they develop the latest and greatest tech products and applications. This is by no means the end of facial recognition guidelines but the NTIA has led a successful effort that has built a strong foundation that will enable U.S. consumers to reap the benefits of a valuable technology that will make life more convenient and secure.”


Bloomberg BNA - Amended Ill. Breach Notice Raises Compliance Questions

H.B. 1260 also tightens Illinois’ thresholds for disclosures to law enforcement and consumers, leaving data collectors with more rigorous post-breach compliance duties. The law specifically requires state agency data collectors to notify the Illinois Attorney General of breaches involving 250 or more Illinois residents. Data collectors must notify the state within 45 days of the discovery of a breach.

Christopher Oswald, vice president of advocacy for the Direct Marketing Association, said H.B. 1260 marks a huge improvement over Senate Bill 1833, which passed the Illinois General Assembly last Spring. DMA was one of two dozen organizations, including the Consumer Data Industry Association, NetChoice and the Electronic Retailing Association, that lobbied Rauner to veto S.B. 1833 last August (14 PVLR 1628, 9/7/15).


Rethink class action lawsuits in the digital age

It’s been said that making a mistake requires a person – making a big mistake requires a computer. And we’ve all experienced this. Accidentally hitting “reply all” or sending out a Tweet instead of a direct message.

While we all figured this out pretty quickly, greedy attorneys figured this out too. They realized they can mutate decades-old consumer protection rules into giant pay-days by combining harmless computer errors with class action lawsuits and statutory damages.

READ MORE at The Hill

Biometric Update - NTIA near producing draft of facial recognition code of conduct

Carl Szabo, policy counsel for industry group NetChoice, who is part of the working group developing the draft told The Hill: “There has been a bunch of really great work done by groups to help their members navigate the universe of facial recognition technology. What we’re trying to do is take their good work and the work of everyone who has contributed so far and kind of expand it a little bit further to address public-facing uses of facial recognition technology.”


The Hill – European courts should provide a clear ‘Safe Harbor’ for the Internet

To watch BBC News or send online messages to European friends, data must flow across the Atlantic. The EU-U.S. Safe Harbor Agreement makes these data transfers possible – but this might soon change.

We could soon see “cyber-fences” between the U.S. and EU if negotiators from both sides fail to adopt a new agreement by the end of the month.

Read more at The Hill

Student privacy legislation requires a surgical approach

Our nation’s schools have always been responsible for providing a safe educational environment for our children.  Today, technology in the classroom is making our schools face challenges meeting that responsibility.

But some believe schools must choose between privacy and technology. This is a false choice.  Parents, schools, students, and lawmakers can have both – it’s just a matter of crafting the right policy.

Read more at The Hill

FTC’s credibility tarnishes as its privacy offensives grow

Having worked for an FTC commissioner, I’ve seen first hand the commission’s regulatory successes. Imbued with the powers of competitive oversight and consumer protection, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) was a beacon for other governmental agencies.

Unfortunately, times have changed. The commission’s recent obsession with media exposure has darkened the FTC’s luminescence.  The FTC has forgotten its core foundational tenet: identify practices that actually harm consumers.

Read More at THE HILL