Congress takes steps toward protecting consumer data

Congress is taking steps toward setting national regulations on how companies use consumer data.

Some of Silicon Valley's biggest tech giants went before the senate commerce committee on Wednesday to explain their privacy policies.

It comes after recent scandals, like the Facebook data breach, that caused increased consumer anxiety over who has their information and why they're using it.

When it comes to data privacy and consumer trust, A Harris poll survey found that 85-percent of consumers feel companies should be doing more to actively protect their data.

As Congress works toward setting a federal precedent on how companies use consumer data, privacy advocates argue legislation is needed to govern how data is collected, used, kept, shared and sold.

"I think people want the decision to say I want to enjoy the benefits of internet without the destruction of losing everything I have because my information is being sold to the world," Brandon Schwemly, network technician, said.

A California law set to take effect in 2020 will require companies to tell customers what personal data they've collected, why it was collected and which third parties have received it.
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