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Business Groups Urge Federal Privacy Law

The US Chamber of Commerce and other leading business organizations are calling on Congress to pass comprehensive privacy legislation that would cover the whole country. Citing a growing number of state laws and the efforts of the FTC to devise privacy enforcement measures without a federal law, the business groups say having a single national privacy law would make business easier by introducing a single standard for privacy.

California passed the country's first comprehensive privacy law nearly three years ago; that law will be upgraded in 2023 and joined by laws in Colorado and Virginia. In addition, the Federal Trade Commission has adopted privacy as an area for enforcement under "unfair trade practices" legislation. The result is that different measures may be required in different states, or that the FTC may find a privacy problem even though there is currently no federal definition of what privacy practices should be.  

The move to more comprehensive consumer privacy legislation began in the EU, which enacted an updated privacy regulation in 2018. That rule spurred California into action. Other countries around the world are also upgrading their privacy laws to match the EU's.  

"A national privacy law that is clear and fair to business and empowering to consumers will foster the digital ecosystem necessary for America to compete," the groups said in a letter addressed members of Congress.


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