Governor Brown Signs Landmark Privacy Law

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The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 brings country’s toughest protections 

SACRAMENTO – A comprehensive internet privacy and data breach protection bill introduced by Senators Bill Dodd, D-Napa, Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys and Assemblymember Ed Chau, D-Monterey Park, passed the Senate and Assembly on Thursday and was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown. Adoption of the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 was followed by the withdrawal of a ballot measure seeking the same protections that would have cost California taxpayers millions of dollars.

“Once again California is taking the lead in protecting consumers and holding bad actors accountable,” Sen. Dodd said. “My hope is other states will follow, ensuring privacy and safeguarding personal information in a way the federal government has so far been unwilling to do.”

Recent data breaches that affected millions – those experienced by Target, Equifax, Cambridge Analytica, and many more – have raised concerns from internet users around the world. The continued prevalence of such occurrences and uncertainty about what data is being collected has drawn the ire of consumer and public interest groups.

With this in mind, Senators Dodd and Hertzberg and Assemblymember Chau introduced legislation to expand the rights of consumers to know what data is being collected about them online, and even to delete it. The bill would also empower consumers to decline the sale of their information and report violations, which must then be addressed by the violator or risk civil action. It includes protections from Dodd’s existing bill, Senate Bill 1121.

The co-authors released the following statements:

“Today the California Legislature made history by passing the most comprehensive privacy law in the country,” said Sen. Hertzberg. “We in California are continuing to push the envelope on technology and privacy issues by enacting robust consumer protections – without stifling innovation.”

“Today, California took a historic step in enacting legislation to protect children and consumers by giving them control of their own personal data,” said Assemblymember Chau. “Consumers should have a right to choose how their personal information is collected and used by businesses. It is your data, your privacy, your choice.”

AB 375 is similar to the ballot initiative on the same subject sponsored by Alastair Mactaggart, who agreed to pull his initiative if AB 375 passed both houses by today’s deadline and was signed by the governor. Some provisions in AB 375 would give more privacy protection to consumers than the ballot initiative.

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Senator Bill Dodd represents California’s 3rd Senate District, which includes all or portions of Solano, Napa, Sonoma, Yolo, Sacramento, and Contra Costa counties. You can learn more about Senator Dodd at www.sen.ca.gov/dodd.


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