Forget worrying about loyalty cards or programs: it’s the everyday purchases you make tied to your name with a debit or credit card that can land you on data brokers’ lists. That is one of the many facts that the new FTC report on data brokers sets forth. The report offers a high-level analysis with establishing new fact patterns about the industry based on the Commission’s investigation of nine major data brokers. Overall, we find things to like in the report, but we wish the FTC had gone further in some areas. Here are some of the high points that stood out to us.
The European Court of Justice has recently decided an important case involving privacy and search engines. The decision may have enormously broad implications for privacy, for search engines, and for the Internet as a whole. This brief analysis provides context and highlights of the court’s decision, with a discussion of the implications, which are far-ranging.
May 20 Update: see our full analysis of the ruling here. In a ruling with far-reaching implications for online privacy, the European Court of Justice has ruled that online search companies are subject to the European Data Protection Directive, (Directive 95/46/EC) . Search engine companies that are based in the EU, or multi-national search engine
Mobile messaging app Snapchat, which promised its users ephemeral, disappearing picture and video messages, has settled FTC charges that pics and videos sent through its app weren’t as ephemeral as the company promised. According to the FTC, Snapchat transmitted users’ location data, and collected users’ address books without notice or consent. Also, the snaps weren’t
Video of Congressional Testimony on data brokers. Pam Dixon gave this testimony before the Senate Commerce Committee on December 18, 2013 at a hearing dedicated to shedding light on data broker industry practices and how that affects consumers. The full testimony contains numerous examples of data broker activities, consumer scoring, and discusses the solutions that are needed, including a requirement for data broker opt out.