Security: Google Embraces 'Do Not Track' Button, Obama Proposes Privacy Rights

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2012-02-23 Print this article Print
Obama Weighs In on Privacy

Obama Weighs In on Privacy

The Obama Administration introduced a Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights, which provides a "baseline of clear protections for consumers and greater certainty for businesses." "American consumers can't wait any longer for clear rules of the road that ensure their personal information is safe online,said President Obama. "As the Internet evolves, consumer trust is essential for the continued growth of the digital economy. That's why an online privacy Bill of Rights is so important." The first right ensures that consumers have a right to exercise control over what personal data organizations collect from them and how they use it.


If there is a major theme in high-tech in this early part of 2012, it's on consumer data privacy, with a number of both good and bad developments. Google, Apple, Path and several other Silicon Valley companies have dominated headlines. We've seen Google's controversial privacy policy change proposal in January. We watched the drama around Apple's easy enabling of address book sharing for third-party apps like Path, Facebook and others unfold. Last week, we learned of Google's trickery of Apple Safari to enable online ad cookies to run in the Web browser for Macs, iPhones and iPads. But it hasn't been all bad news. On Feb. 22, President Barack Obama unveiled a consumer privacy bill of rights. On the same day, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and others embraced the Do Not Track privacy feature proposed by the Federal Trade Commission. Those are positive steps in the evolution of online privacy. eWEEK details some of the happenings in this slide show.


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