The Obama administration has been far more aggressive than its predecessor in protecting consumer privacy, as witness its latest initiative (via Politico’s Playbook):

Obama unveils online privacy plan

The Obama administration is taking a two-pronged approach to online privacy, calling on Congress to pass a “consumer privacy bill of rights,” while putting the onus on companies like Google and Facebook, as well as privacy watchdogs and online advertisers, to forge new data handling rules for the digital age.

The highly anticipated report released Thursday reflects the White House’s support for a new law that would spell out how consumers’ personal information can be collected, stored, used and shared by the Web’s myriad of entities — some of which have found themselves in Washington’s crosshairs recently for mishandling their users’ data.

But the administration puts at least as much emphasis on its proposal for Internet companies to lead the way on codes of conduct that would draw greatly from the rights and protections the White House wants to codify — rules that, even if lawmakers don’t act, could still be enforced by federal regulators.

Yes, but . . .

From Computerworld:

Obama online privacy plan faces challenge

Privacy groups laud the effort, but note the White House faces difficult task in getting top Internet companies on board

And the beat goes on . . .


John R. Carroll is media analyst for NPR's Here & Now and senior news analyst for WBUR in Boston. He also writes at Campaign Outsider and It's Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town.
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