Eye on Privacy: Tracking What the FTC Tracks
How closely do you track what’s happening at the Federal Trade Commission? If you’re like me, it’s sporadic. But recently, while researching a question on the FTC website, I realized I need to pay more attention. Here are four areas I plan to track more closely in the coming months:
In May, the FTC released the report “Data Brokers: A Call for Transparency and Accountability.” As the title suggests, the FTC, after looking at the practices of nine data brokers, is calling for the industry to be more transparent with consumers about the data collected and to be more accountable by providing consumers access and the ability to correct the data. The FTC concludes by proposing legislation in this area. Critics of the report were quick to point out that while the report focuses on ways the data could potentially be used to harm consumers, no actual harm was identified. That’s good news for the industry—for now. We are a misstep away from proving the FTC’s case. We must be vigilant about how we use data and how we allow others to use the data we collect.