Bipartisan privacy proposal is ‘unworkable and should be rejected,’ Chamber of Commerce says

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  • According to a leading business group, the bipartisan privacy proposal is “impractical” to restart the debate about federal protections for Internet users.
  • In a draft letter obtained by CNBC, the US Chamber of Commerce urges congressional leaders not to proceed with the US Data Privacy and Protection Act.
  • The Chamber took issue with the bill’s approach to undoing state law and giving individuals the ability to sue under it.

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According to a leading business group, the bipartisan privacy proposal is “impractical” to restart the debate about federal protections for Internet users.

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The US Data Privacy and Protection Act “as drafted is impractical and should be rejected,” the US Chamber of Commerce said Thursday in a draft letter to congressional leaders on the issue, in a copy obtained by CNBC. wrote. A representative for the chamber confirmed it was working on a coalition letter, but did not immediately comment further.

The draft letter, which may still change before being sent to lawmakers, is an early indication of how corporations will try to use their influence around renewed privacy talks. Lawmakers have spent years at loggerheads over critical questions about how privacy protections should be done, but the new proposal introduced on Friday attempts to thread a delicate needle on those hot button points.

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The bill would give consumers online security and greater control over their data and require companies to reduce the amount of information they collect on users.

The Chamber does not agree on how the resolution deals with those two components: the relaxation of state laws and the right of individuals to sue for violations.

ADPPA, A discussion draft House Energy & Commerce Leaders Rep. Frank Pallon, D.N.J., Kathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., and Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., ranking member of the Commerce Committee, takes a unique approach to two issues. offer Some state laws will be exempt but others will remain enforceable, including Illinois’s Biometric Privacy Protection Act and other categories of state laws such as general consumer protection statutes or laws regarding cyberstalking or cyberbullying.

Chambers took issue with those carvings.

“A national privacy law should be a true national standard, but the bill’s exempt language makes up fifteen different state laws, including California and Illinois,” the group wrote. “This law will create a new national patchwork of privacy laws.”

The discussed draft also includes a private right of action, which allows individuals who believe their rights were violated to sue companies for alleged violations. Democrats have advocated it and Republicans have mostly opposed it, although Vickers began to indicate his openness to it at earlier hearings. But it will take four years from the enactment of the bill for the private right to action to come into force.

The Chamber argued in the draft paper that it “would encourage abusive class action lawsuits against legitimate business malformed by the ADPPA’s many subjective standards, resulting in the massive litigation, costs and fees that the bill provides for plaintiffs’ attorneys.” will do.”

Notably missing from that motion was Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., who, along with other Senate Democrats, issued her own privacy motion. In a statement after the ADPPA was released, Cantwell said, “For meaningful privacy protections for American consumers, we need a strong federal law that is not riddled with enforcement loopholes. Consumers have the ability to protect their rights on day one.” worth it, not four years later.”

The chamber had previously urged Congress to pass a federal privacy law to circumvent a patchwork of state laws. But it said it didn’t fit the bill.

“Unfortunately, the ADPPA was issued less than two months before the August holiday, and we believe that a bill that has been so novel, complex and so ingrained in the business practices of nearly every industry, such as manufacturing, retail, financial services, far-reaching. The hospitality, and innovation sectors should not be rushed during the last six months of Congress,” the group wrote. “National data privacy law deserves meaningful input from advocates and industry alike.”

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