Privacy Law Update: August 16, 2021
Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google is blocking ad targeting based on the age, gender or interests of people under 18, the company said on Tuesday. It also said it would turn off its “location history” feature, which tracks location data, for users under 18 globally. It will further expand the types of age-sensitive ad categories that are blocked for users up to 18 and will turn on safe searching filters for users up to that age. Google is introducing a new policy for all under-18s and their parents or guardians to request the removal of the young person’s images from Google Image search results, the company said in a blog post, as part of several changes regarding young users.
Apple unveiled plans to scan U.S. iPhones for images of child sexual abuse, drawing applause from child protection groups but raising concern among some security researchers that the system could be misused, including by governments looking to surveil their citizens. The tool designed to detected known images of child sexual abuse, called “neuralMatch,” will scan images before they are uploaded to iCloud. If it finds a match, the image will be reviewed by a human. If child pornography is confirmed, the user’s account will be disabled and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children notified.
With regards to privacy legislation, Congress needs to ask itself the question posed by the philosopher Hillel: “and if not now, when?” Every year multiple privacy bills are introduced in Congress and ever year multiple privacy bills never leave committee. The members of Congress tout the importance of online privacy for Americans, but fail to put words into action. This time it may be different and the regulatory structure established is critical to protecting personal data. One key item is ensuring data brokers are captured by this legislation and given the oversight that is desperately needed.
National Institute of Standards and Technology officials are gleaning insights from a range of players as they work to draft Congressionally-directed guidance promoting the responsible use of artificial intelligence technologies. That in-the-making document—the Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework, or AI RMF—is aimed at building the public’s trust in the increasingly adopted technology, according to a recent request for information.
- No substantive updates this week
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