Privacy Ref Blog

California – The Next GDPR?

Starting January 1, 2020, if you are a for-profit company doing business in California, you may have new data privacy compliance obligations. Specifically, California just enacted the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (the country’s strictest data privacy law to date), placing new privacy mandates on certain businesses with respect to the personal information of consumers (defined as natural persons who are California residents). Many aspects of the new law smack of EU-GDPR influences, such as a new and improved (in other words, broader) definition of personal information and the inclusion of guaranteed consumer rights with respect to such personal information. If your business is already in compliance with the EU’s GDPR, the California law will be nothing new to you. For other businesses, however, you have 18 months to get with the program.

In the past, a business only needed to be concerned with protecting identification numbers (SSN, driver’s license, passport, etc.); financial, employment, educational, insurance, and health information; and user IDs and passwords. Now, however, added to the list of protected data elements are: email addresses, IP addresses, Internet browsing history, biometrics, geolocation data, commercial information (such as a consumer’s purchasing history), profiling inferences, “audio, electronic, visual, thermal, olfactory, or similar information,” or any other information that “identifies, relates to, describes, is capable of being associated with, or could reasonably be linked, directly or indirectly, with a particular consumer or household.”

With respect to this personal information, California consumers have been expressly granted the right: (1) to know what personal information is being collected about them; (2) to know whether their personal information is sold or disclosed and to whom; (3) to opt out of the sale of their personal information; (4) to access their personal information (and, in most cases, have it deleted upon request); and (5) to be free from discrimination for exercising their privacy rights. To ensure these rights are not violated, businesses are required to take certain steps, such as, when requested by the consumer, advising the consumer of the categories of information collected and the purposes for such collection, and of their right to have such information deleted. To meet their obligations under the new law, companies must, among other things, develop communication avenues, privacy notices, website statements, and the like.

The new law generally applies to businesses (and entities that “control or are controlled by” and “share common branding with” such businesses) that collect or sell consumers’ personal information, or disclose such information for a business purpose, provided that:
(1) The business (either alone or jointly) determines the purposes and means of processing the personal information (a la GDPR), and
(2) The business meets at least one of the following thresholds:
a. Has annual gross revenues in excess of $25 million;
b. On an annual basis, buys, receives, sells, or shares for commercial purposes the personal information of 50,000 or more consumers, households, or devices; or
c. Derives 50% or more of its annual revenues from selling consumers’ personal information.

The terms “business purpose” and “commercial purposes” are also specifically defined in the law.

The obligations placed on companies by the new law are numerous and very specific as to what must be done, how it must be done, and when. Violations of the law can result in civil penalties and the payment of damages. If you think your company may be subject to this new law, Privacy Ref is available to help you assess your compliance level and needs.

Privacy Ref provides consulting and assessment services to build and improve organizational privacy programs. For more information call Privacy Ref at (888) 470-1528 or email us at info@privacyref.com

Posted on July 9, 2018 by Kelly Cheary


« »

No Responses

Comments are closed.


« »

Subscribe to our mailing list

Please fill out the form below.

Required

Want to find out more?

Simply go to the contact page, fill out the form, and someone from Privacy Ref will be in touch with you. You can also send an email to info@privacyref.com or call (888) 470-1528.

News

April 16, 2018

IAPP Training Classes
Privacy Ref is proud to announce that we are an official training partner of the IAPP. You now have the opportunity to learn from one of our knowledgeable privacy professionals using the most respected training content in the industry. The robust interactive training offered, aids in the understanding of critical privacy concepts. The contents of the courses are integral to obtaining your privacy certifications and to educate your new team. Learn more here.

Latest Blog Posts

November 12, 2018

My path towards privacy
My path towards a career in the privacy field was a circuitous route. As a perennially engaged Political Organizer and activist, information privacy and data management would not have been the most obvious path for my next endeavor. However, after serving on a campaign that featured the most famous political data breach in history, privacy and the importance of data management came crashing into my life. Continue reading this post...

November 2, 2018

PSR and CCPA
A few weeks ago, I made it to Austin, TX for the Privacy Security and Risk Conference being held by the IAPP. As always, it was a great conference with pros and those who have only just begun as privacy professionals. One of the most interesting aspects of the conference was the focus on the newest US based privacy regulation, the California Consumer Protection Act. While not being in California, it was obviously the center of the conversation as many eyed this upcoming regulation as the next possible GDPR. Continue reading this post...

Other Recent Posts

PRIVACY REF