Online data collection

The practice of collecting, profiling and selling personal information gathered from Internet users is very common. Consumer profile lists are often one of the most valued assets of a retailing or marketing firm. Many companies have been criticized for compiling detailed profiles of users without their knowledge. Firms use algorithms to determine which ad to display on a consumer’s device, or to predict their buying habits. These formulas can be used to create a digital picture of a viewer to infer race, gender or sexual orientation, among other things. Critics claim this technology has the potential to eclipse longstanding civil rights protections in how personal information is used in housing, credit, employment, health, education and the marketplace. They say algorithm data can also be used to discriminate and to make judgments, right or wrong, about who is likely to show up at work, pay their mortgage on time, or require expensive medical treatment.

Data collectors claim they provide a beneficial service and that collecting consumer data is protected by our First Amendment.
Critics believe that collecting data about our online behavior in an invasion of our right to privacy. They believe that only consumers should decide whether their profiles are collected, personalized or sold.

Proposed Legislation: Reintroduction of S.1494 - Consumer Data Privacy and Security Act of 2021
Prospective Sponsor: Sen. Jerry Moran (KS)

Issue Suggestions

Suggest an important issue not listed in this sub-category (). (Maximum 60 Characters)

Poll Opening Date
May 22, 2023
Poll Closing Date
May 28, 2023

Democracy Rules respects the privacy of your information.