Washington, DC – Responding to widespread complaints about the privacy practices of Internet companies like Facebook and Google, the Obama administration on Thursday unveiled its “Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights,” a framework for protecting the personal data or web users.

The list includes giving individual consumers better control over the personal data collected from them by companies and how it is used, as well as transparency about privacy practices and responsible handling of personal data. Using the outline, the Commerce Department plans to meet with companies, privacy advocates and other stakeholders to develop enforceable privacy policies. “American consumers can’t wait any longer for clear rules of the road that ensure their personal information is safe online,” said President Obama. “As the Internet evolves, consumer trust is essential for the continued growth of the digital economy. That’s why an online privacy Bill of Rights is so important.” In addition, the White House said that companies delivering nearly 90% of online behavioral advertisements, including Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and AOL, have now committed to utilize “Do Not Track” buttons embedded in web browers, giving consumers the option of keeping their browsing histories from being tracked. Companies making the commitment will be subject to enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

This article was also published in Potomac Tech Wire.

Related link:

White House press release –

Official White House photo by Pete Souza shows President Obama using a tablet in the Oval Office, Jan. 31.


White House – Privacy in a Networked World