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[FYI] (Fwd) FC: Industry studies attack U.S. data collection regulation

------- Forwarded message follows -------
Date sent:      	Tue, 13 Mar 2001 08:52:08 -0800
To:             	politech@politechbot.com
From:           	Declan McCullagh <declan@well.com>
Subject:        	FC: Industry studies attack U.S. data collection regulations
Send reply to:  	declan@well.com

"Industry Studies Attack Web-Privacy Laws"
Wall Street Journal (03/13/01) P. B6; Bridis, Ted

A new campaign is underway to impress legislators with the
dangers online privacy laws pose to businesses.  Four industry
studies were published yesterday by the Direct Marketing
Association, which is working closely with the Online Privacy
Alliance--including tech companies such as IBM, Microsoft, Sun
Microsystems, and AOL Time Warner--to preempt Internet privacy
legislation at both the state and federal level.  Although
observers say any laws are unlikely to be passed this year,
businesses in the tech sector are jittery over what they say is a $17
billion threat to the 90 largest financial institutions. According to
one of the studies released, the costs of Internet privacy laws would
be passed onto consumers in the form of an informal $1 billion
information tax.  Adding to the concern is companies' worry that
sensationalism over privacy infringements on the Web could result in
fast-moving laws they would be hard-pressed to stop.  Tech companies
maintain that the best solution to online privacy problems are new
technologies, not new laws.  However, the Electronic Privacy
Information Center's Marc Rotenberg says the issue is too big and too
pressing to ignore. "This is not an issue on the radar screen.  It is
the radar screen," he says, although he admits that laws dealing with
Internet privacy will take some time.  Already, some corporate
technology interests, such as Intel and Hewlett-Packard, have conceded
that moderate Internet privacy regulation would prove beneficial and
that some form of legislation is inevitable.

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