Tune in to the second episode of Ropes & Gray’s podcast series The Data Day, brought to you by the firm’s data, privacy & cybersecurity practice. This series focuses on the day-to-day effects that data has on all of our lives as well as other exciting and interesting legal and regulatory developments in the
California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
California AG Announces New CCPA Sweep
Just in time for Data Privacy Day, the California attorney general (“California AG”) announced a new round of privacy investigations targeting the retail, travel, and food service industries. The investigative sweep will focus on “popular apps” that allegedly fail to honor consumer requests to opt out of the “sale” of their personal information. The sweep will also review responses to requests sent on behalf of consumers by authorized agents such as the “Permission Slip” application developed by Consumer Reports. Even with the considerable attention owed to the new requirements of the California Privacy Rights Act (“CPRA”)—which amends and expands on the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”)—along with the significant recent activity by the California Privacy Protection Agency, businesses should not overlook their ongoing obligations to comply with the CCPA prior to the CPRA’s enforcement beginning on July 1, 2023.…
Across the Finish Line (Almost): Revised California Consumer Privacy Act Regulations Approved by California Privacy Board
On Friday, February 3, 2023, the California Privacy Protection Agency (the “CPPA”) Board (the “Board”) approved draft regulations issued under the California Consumer Privacy Act, as amended and expanded by the California Privacy Rights Act (together, the “CCPA”). The draft regulations will now go through review by the Office of Administrative Law (the “OAL”), the final step in the rulemaking process before the regulations are scheduled to take effect. The draft agreed upon by the Board is in substantially the same form as the draft regulations published in November 2022 with only minor grammatical and stylistic changes. As such, the draft regulations will have a significant impact on many businesses if approved, adding specifics around the CCPA’s proportionality requirements, contracts with service providers and other third parties, opt-out preference signals, and processes for responding to data subject rights requests. In the same meeting, the Board also requested public comment on topics that are likely to be covered in a new set of regulations from February 10, 2023, through March 27, 2023.…
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Recent Activity from the California Privacy Protection Agency
At a meeting of the California Privacy Protection Agency (“CPPA”) on June 8, we learned additional information about the initial batch of proposed regulations (“Proposed Regulations”) to the California Privacy Rights Act (“CPRA”) that were published on May 27. The Proposed Regulations keep much of the pre-existing California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) regulations but modify and add some key provisions. Because the CPRA was drafted as an amendment to the CCPA, the Proposed Regulations reference the CCPA (as amended by the CPRA). The Proposed Regulations focus on data subject rights, contractual requirements, and obligations related to disclosures, notices, and consents. Additional proposals will cover cybersecurity audits, privacy risk assessments, and automated decision making, among other areas. While we expect significant changes as the Proposed Regulations proceed through the formal rulemaking process, which the CPPA has not yet officially started, we provide our key takeaways below:…
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California Attorney General’s Office Releases First Formal CCPA Opinion
The California Attorney General’s office (OAG) recently released its first formal written opinion on the scope of the rights granted to consumers under the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), specifically, the right for a consumer to know about the personal information that a business collects from them. The opinion comes in response to a question submitted by California Assembly member Kevin Kiley as to whether a consumer’s right to know the specific pieces of personal information that a business has collected about that consumer applies to internally generated inferences the business holds about them. The OAG asserted that the right to know does apply to such inferences, albeit with certain key exceptions.
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Momentum Builds for State Privacy Laws but the Possibility of a Federal Law Remains Remote
As 2021 comes to a close, it is a great time to take stock of the present state of affairs with respect to U.S. privacy laws. With the relatively recent passage of comprehensive privacy laws in California, and additional countries adopting laws that closely follow the principles of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), along with increasing public concerns regarding how companies manage customers’ personal data, legal practitioners entered 2021 with high hopes that comprehensive federal privacy legislation may finally be on the horizon. Nevertheless, in a trend that is likely to continue in the year ahead, it was the states rather than federal legislatures that successfully added to the ranks of privacy laws with which businesses will soon need to comply.
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Minnesota Debates New Privacy Bills
Building on the momentum of the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”), California Privacy Rights Act (“CPRA”), and the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act (“CDPA”), and the consideration of similar laws in states like Washington and New York, Minnesota’s legislature is debating HF 36, introduced on January 7, 2021, and HF 1492, introduced on February 22, 2021. Significantly, HF 36 grants consumers a private right of action for any violation of its provisions—something that was considered but not ultimately included in the CCPA, which provides for a private right of action only in the event of a data breach. In contrast, HF 1492 joins Virginia’s CDPA by relying on regulatory enforcement and generally pursuing an approach that is closer to Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”). If passed, HF 36 would take effect on June 30, 2022, and HF 1492, also known as the Minnesota Consumer Data Privacy Act (“MCDPA”) on July 31, 2022.
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Florida House and Senate Privacy Legislation Fails to Pass
Florida joined the fray of state legislatures vying to become the third state to enact comprehensive data privacy legislation following the passage of Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act (“CDPA”). Introduced in February with the support of Governor DeSantis, House Bill 969 (“HB 969”) shared many similarities with the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”), including a private right of action. At the same time, the previously identical Senate Bill 1734 (“SB 1734”) was recently amended to limit the scope of the law and remove the private right of action. As with some many other state laws, the Florida bills have died for the present legislative session due to the breakdown over the private cause of action. …
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Yet Another Round of CCPA Regulations
The California Attorney General’s Office of Administrative Law has approved additional amendments to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) regulations, which went into effect March 15, 2021. A preliminary version of these new regulations were initially to be submitted as part of the CCPA regulations that went into effect on August 14, 2020, but were ultimately removed from that set of regulations. Instead these four new regulations were pulled from the proposal last minute and were not submitted for review, only to be reintroduced in October 2020 (see article here).
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Virginia Poised to Join California with Comprehensive Data Protection Framework
Since passage of the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) and California Privacy Rights Act (“CPRA”), many states have proposed data protection bills that have floundered in the legislative process. Virginia, previously a dark horse in the race amongst US states to pass data protection legislation, is now poised to take the lead with the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act (“CDPA”). Unlike bills that have repeatedly stalled in key states like Washington, the CDPA has progressed swiftly and easily in this now “trifecta Blue” Virginia, with the Virginia Senate passing a version of the bill on February 3, less than a week after the House passed a near-identical companion bill. If the governor signs the CDPA into law, the CDPA will take effect January 1, 2023, simultaneously with the CPRA.
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