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Rush Unveils "Best Practices Act"

PRIVACY LAW—U.S.

July 20, 2010

House Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection Subcommittee Chairman Bobby Rush (D-IL) has introduced a new privacy bill that seeks to "foster transparency about the commercial use of personal information and provide consumers with meaningful choices about the collection, use and disclosure of such information." The Best Practices Act would require online companies to get users' permission before collecting sensitive information such as Social Security numbers, medical or financial data and race or ethnicity, Broadcasting & Cable reports. It would also require companies that share "less sensitive" personal information with third parties to obtain user consent and would mandate that opt-outs be provided for the collection of all other personal data. Rush's bill calls for the Federal Trade Commission to administer the new regulations, with fines of up to $5 million for noncompliance. A hearing on the proposal and the similar Boucher-Stearns bill is scheduled for Thursday.
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