When your CEO just faced a grilling by the Senate over a lack of privacy and data protection, it looks pretty bad if a company continues to fight against new privacy laws. So it will come as little surprise that Facebook has decided to no longer fight to block the proposed California Consumer Privacy Act.
The Privacy Act being proposed would empower anyone in the state to tell businesses not to share or sell their personal data, give them the right to know what personal information is collected about them, and offers protections for consumers “who are victims of negligent business practices resulting in security breaches of data.” All of which don’t help a company like Facebook, which profits from having a lot of freedom to collect and use your data.
As Engadget reports, Facebook had already donated $200,000 to help try and defeat the act. It won’t be contributing anymore money, but AT&T, Comcast, Google, and Verizon are some of the bigger companies who continue to fight against it. The worry for these companies is, a limit on data access and flow also limits their business model and therefore potential profit. And if one state enacts new data privacy rules, others will surely follow.
The Privacy Act is on the ballot in November. Facebook may have removed itself from the fight, but if revelations about abuse of data on the social network continue to appear, it could influence citizens who will vote to protect themselves.