BIGtoken, Inc., the first privacy focused, opt-in data marketplace where people can own and monetize their data, publishes a monthly report on the top 10 stories in data and crypto privacy.
The government plays a critical role in protecting privacy rights through the enactment of laws and regulations governing the collection and use of personal data. The support for passage of these laws continues to grow albeit at a slower pace than many would hope.
1. “Comprehensive Data Privacy Law Bring Big Changes To Virginia, But Excludes Personal Employee Data,” The National Law Review – April 7, 2021
- Virginia has become the second state to enact a comprehensive data privacy law. The law, not effective until January 2023, grants its citizens the right to “access, correct, delete, know about, and opt out of the sales and processing of their personal information for ‘targeted advertising’.” While it is not clear that this law covers employee data, Virginia’s comprehensive law is a huge step forward in creating privacy laws at the state level.
2. “Colorado Mulls New Data Privacy Bill,” ExchangeWire – April 6, 2021
- Colorado has become the latest U.S. state to introduce a new data privacy bill. Still in the early stages of the legislative process, the introduction of the bill is a step in the right direction for Colorado’s focus on regulating the collection and use of personal data.
3. “Data Privacy Bill Easily Clears House,” Florida Politics – April 21, 2021
- In a continuation of the efforts of States to govern data privacy, the house in Florida almost unanimously passed a bill that would allow people to control how their data is shared and sold. Importantly, the current version of the Bill has “teeth” by enabling consumers to take legal action for violations of these regulations. As is often the case, many businesses contend that the Bill will be overly restrictive and expensive. Nonetheless, the Florida Bill has bipartisan support and the momentum to become a law.
4. “Big Tech Is Pushing States To Pass Privacy Laws, And Yes, You Should Be Suspicious,” The Nextweb – April 19, 2021
- As more States become focused on passing data privacy laws, they are becoming more challenged from Big Tech to dilute proposed privacy legislation. There are concerns that in 14 of the 20 States the data privacy rules have been eroded through the efforts of Big Tech companies. The concern about effective privacy laws at the State level coupled with variations of the laws should prompt the Federal Government to enter the data privacy fray sooner rather than later.
As rules and regulations continue to move forward, the balance between the benefits and potential harm concerning the collection and use of personal data continues to be exposed and debated. Further, as the data privacy issue becomes more understood, concerns about its misuse in areas such as personal financial information has become increasingly heightened.
5. “Increase In Digital Banking Raises Consumer Data Privacy Concerns: How To Protect Yourself,” Forbes – April 5, 2021
- For many, online digital banking has become essential for a person to manage their financial affairs. However, this trend leaves critical personal information exposed to the collection of potential harmful data. While consumers are encouraged to be proactive in ensuring the financial data remains private (understand account information, manage passwords, use secured internet browsers, etc.), people are clamoring for regulations that will protect a person’s critical financial information.
6. “Facebook Is Under Investigation In The EU For Its Massive Leak Of 533 Million People’s Data – And It Could Face A Fine In The Billions,” Business Insider – April 14, 2021
- Europe’s leading privacy regulator is investigating Facebook’s handling of the leak of phone numbers and personal data of more than half a billion people. If Facebook is found to have violated the EU’s rules concerning data, it could be liable for up to $3.5 billion, approximately 4% of its global revenue. Surprisingly, Facebook was vulnerable to a cyber attack allowing this enormous amount of data to be dumped onto a hacking forum. Whether found liable or having a cavalier attitude with a lack of transparency, it is time for Facebook to take its users personal data more seriously.
8. “Personal Data And Privacy: Social Media Users Must Realize There’s Always A Price To Pay For ‘Free’ Apps,” MSN – April 20, 2021
- Social media participants are becoming increasingly aware that their social media activities create real privacy risks. In a survey conducted in Hong Kong, 35% of the users of instant messaging apps believe that access to their full contact information to be an invasion of their privacy. Many in this survey are not only concerned about how their data is collected and sold, they increasingly are more focused on how this data can be used to profile users, cyberbullying and fraud. The louder these concerns are voiced the stronger the governmental protections and meaningful changes in privacy policies will become.
More and more, there is a focus on how blockchain technology can improve data privacy and security in areas including cryptocurrency, payment processing and non-fungible tokens (NFT’s). There is no question that blockchain technology will become critical in all industries and every aspect of life.
9. “The Challenges of Private Blockchain Transactions,” Nasdaq – April 9, 2021
- Privacy surrounding bitcoin transactions has been a concern since it started trading. Even though bitcoin trades utilize blockchain technology, it is becoming clear that participants in this market do not enjoy the privacy they believe they had. Fortunately, there are many projects underway to incentify participants to develop more secure and private transactions using improved blockchain technology.
10. “Institutions Begin to Implement Innovative Functions of Blockchain Technology,” PR Newswire– April 26, 2021
- To date, blockchain technology has largely been used for cryptocurrency. However, many believe that blockchain technology will continue to expand because of its benefits in security, trust, data sharing, transparency, among other things. Currently, blockchain technology has been critical in the explosion of NFT’s, including the development, ownership and sale of NFT’s.
11. “Dtsocialize – The New Blockchain Concept for Privacy Protection,” Yahoo – April 21, 2021
- Italian company DTsocialize announced its ambitious goal of creating a digital ecosystem on blockchain for the purposes of protecting privacy. Because the ecosystem is free, completely decentralized and democratic, there will be no ban or censure of the digital contents inside the platform. DT, also the creator of DT Coin, is another company with visions of the true power of blockchain technology.