17 December 2010

US administration proposes 'bill of rights' to protect online privacy

(OUT-LAW News)
The administration of US President Barack Obama may turn its back on its policy of allowing online publishers and advertisers to self-regulate and is proposing Government intervention to protect internet users' privacy. The Department of Commerce has published a report (88-page / 1MB PDF) recommending the creation of a privacy 'bill of rights' for internet users; mandatory privacy codes of conduct; and legal reform to take account of cloud computing. The Department of Commerce's policy framework says that the US Government should "consider establishing fair information practice principles comparable to a 'privacy bill of rights' for online consumers; consider developing enforceable privacy codes of conduct in specific sectors with stakeholders; create a Privacy Policy Office in the Department of Commerce"; [and] review the Electronic Communications Privacy Act for the cloud computing environment.