FTC, the De Facto Privacy Regulator.
The Federal Trade “Commission has settled or litigated more than 60 law enforcement actions against businesses that allegedly failed to take reasonable precautions to protect consumers’ data,” said FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Andrew Smith in testimony before a Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Subcommittee.
Cases included: manufacturers of consumer products like smartphones, computers, routers, and connected toys, as well as against companies that collect consumers’ sensitive personal information.
Other points discussed:
- The FTC brings cases under provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.
- It has used its authority under Section 5 of the FTC Act to stop companies who allegedly engage in unreasonable data security practices, or made misleading statements or omissions about data security.
- FTC supports new data protection legislation that would give it the ability to seek civil penalties for effective deterrence; and jurisdiction over nonprofits and common carriers.