The administration will release an executive order designed to keep personal data about Americans out of the hands of “countries of concern,” according to news reports in late January. Because data brokers (and others) increasingly have access to – and can trade in – information such as location data, genetic details, and other personal matters, it is easy for foreign governments to buy and use them for espionage, blackmail, and other nefarious purposes. Moreover, with AI tools, such data is increasingly easy to mine and exploit.
Why It Matters
Any effort to stop foreign access to US data through legitimate transactions will have likely knock-on effects for legitimate US business activity centered on such data. Because news reports indicate that the Executive Order could center on data brokers, investment agreements, employment agreements, and vendor agreements, there is a huge swath of potential commercial activity that could be roped into a new compliance/security scheme by such an order.
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