Senator Kevin Thomas Reintroduces Legislation to Protect Consumer Privacy
(Albany, NY) — New York State Senator Kevin Thomas (D-Levittown) today reintroduced The New York Privacy Act (S.6701) to strengthen protections over consumers’ personal data and create accountability standards for businesses that collect, process and use consumers’ personally identifiable data.
“Consumers should have a right to choose if and how their personal information is collected and used by companies,” said Senator Kevin Thomas, Chair of Consumer Protection. “And New Yorkers deserve to know that businesses who are collecting, processing and protecting their personally identifiable information are doing so ethically and responsibly. The New York Privacy Act will set new, groundbreaking standards for comprehensive privacy legislation by advancing consumer privacy rights and creating stronger industry standards that empower businesses to enhance consumer confidence by putting privacy and security front-and-center.”
“The New York Privacy Act checks all the boxes necessary for general protection of people's privacy while also enabling needed data protection and portability innovations in the marketplace,” said Professor David Carroll, data privacy advocate and subject of the Netflix Documentary The Great Hack. “This legislation not only deters another Cambridge Analytica-style actor from getting away with mass data abuse, but it also protects our democracy by granting us the data rights we need so that a free and open global marketplace of protected data can better thrive, naturally centered in New York.”
The New York Privacy Act would:
- Provide consumers with more control over their privacy by requiring companies to obtain consent from consumers before processing their personal data.
- Establish transparency and accountability standards for businesses that collect and process a significant amount of personal data.
- Equip the Office of the Attorney General with authority to conduct oversight of data brokers, companies that collect personal information about consumers and then sell that data to controllers or third parties.
Several leading business and privacy organizations are supportive of the New York Privacy Act. Prior to the bill’s reintroduction, the New York Senate held numerous hearings on protecting consumer data and privacy on online platforms to gather additional input from industry leaders, experts, and stakeholders.
Senator Kevin Thomas serves as Chairman of the Consumer Protection Committee and sits on the Banks, Finance, Health, Internet & Technology, Judiciary, and Local Government Committees. He represents New York’s 6th Senate District.