Industry groups are mobilizing against California’s new data privacy law, which they say was rushed through the state legislature and quickly signed last week by Gov. Jerry Brown.
The far-reaching law, which doesn’t take effect until 2020, is similar to new European Union standards for data privacy that took effect in May. The California Consumer Privacy Act requires companies to show users what data is collected on them, what the data will be used for and to identify any third parties who have been given access to the data. The new law will be enforced by the California attorney general and provides Internet users a private right of action if companies fail to adequately protect their data.
“I think it’s a wake-up call for the tech community to recognize that we need to be engaged and proactive in being part of the solution,” said state Assemblyman Evan Low, who represents Silicon Valley.
The law has sparked concern from trade groups that said they had no input before the bill was rushed through the state legislature.
“It is going to take time to fully understand the implications of this bill for California’s consumers and economy,” Robert Callahan, vice president of state government affairs at the Internet Association, told the Washington Post. “The bill was written in a hurried and ill-considered process and received very little input from those affected by the legislation. Changes will be necessary as businesses of all types look at implementation.”
State lawmakers rushed the bill through both houses to keep a poorly drafted initiative off California’s November ballot. Although many lawmakers expressed concerns with the bill text and the process used to pass it, Republican Assemblyman Jay Obernolte said it was better than leaving the issue to voters this fall.
“I think we can do a better job of balancing the trade-offs between protecting digital privacy on the one hand and encouraging commerce on the other through a legislative process than through the initiative process,” Obernolte said during floor debate on the bill.