Changes to New Privacy Law Already Underway
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Before Governor Brown even had a chance to sign the newly enacted California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) on June 28, 2018, lawmakers were signaling in committee testimony that the legislation would need tweaks and fixes were it to become law. Flaws notwithstanding, it was apparent from statements given by AB 375’s authors, as well as legislators that voted for the bill, that they saw it as preferable to the prospect of a similar measure, which would be much more difficult to amend, going before California voters as a ballot measure in the fall amidst a political environment where privacy has remained a charged topic.
Now, with the pressure of a ballot measure deadline no longer hanging over the legislature like a Sword of Damocles, lawmakers are taking a second look at the landmark privacy bill and offering up a number of changes in the form of SB 1121 (Dodd).
Some of the amendments proposed to the CCPA via SB 1121 in the Assembly Privacy Committee during a July 3rd hearing would: Replace the term “verified request” with “verified consumer request” throughout the Act to accurately reflect the definitions contained therein; correct the plural possessive use of “business” throughout the Act; and reorganize certain paragraphs to ensure clarity.
Additional changes include striking duplicative sentences and clarifying that the private right of action is limited to the data breach provision of the Act. The bill also seeks to protect newsgathering by specifying that the Act shall not be construed to infringe on First-Amendment protected newsgathering activities.
The CLTA anticipates that substantive changes to the CCPA will be proposed in the next legislative session, though whether such changes would ultimately be enacted into law remains uncertain.