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Breaking News: Obama Administration to Support Baseline Privacy Law

15 March 2011

A highly-placed official in the Obama Administration has confirmed that in testimony to be delivered tomorrow before the Senate Commerce Committee, Larry Strickling,  Assistant Secretary in the U.S. Department of Commerce, will announce that the Administration supports baseline privacy legislation that will set broad privacy protections consistent with the Department's recently issued Green Paper, but not detailed prescriptions.  The legislative concept supported by the Obama Administration would have the Commerce Department working with stakeholders to develop Codes of Conduct enforceable by the Federal Trade Commission, that would also create a "Safe Harbor" (the contours of which are unspecified).  The proposed framework is intended  to promote interoperability with foreign frameworks, perhaps leading to a recognition bythe EU of the US privacy law as providing adequate protection.

This is the first time the Administration has expressed support for a federal privacy law.



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