The Washington Post

The Circuit: Privacy, privacy privacy

Administration releases privacy report: A year after releasing a preliminary report on privacy, the White House announced its final framework outlining its suggestions for how companies should handle consumer data.

The so-called privacy “bill of rights” outlines seven key tenets for privacy regulation and, eventually, legislation: individual control, transparency, respect for context, security, access and accuracy, focused collection and accountability.

Industry groups pledge to commit to “do not track”: Leading Web firms such as Google and the 400 firms of the Digital Advertising Alliance pledged to implement “do not track” technology into Web browsers. In a statement, the DAA announced that it will work to recognize choices that users make about tracking in browsers.

“These new Principles codified existing industry practices prohibiting the collection or use of Multi-Site Data for the purpose of any adverse determination concerning employment, credit, health treatment or insurance eligibility, as well as specific protections for sensitive data concerning children, health and financial data,” the group said in a statement.

Reaction to proposal mostly positive: Industry groups and privacy advocates were quick to weigh in on the rules, with mostly positive reaction.

Privacy advocate Justin Brookman, of the Center for Democracy and Technology, also said in a statement that the announcement is a step in the right direction. He gave the advertising industry credit for voluntarily implementing “do not track” technology” in web browsers, though he said there were some aspects of it that still needed definition.

The Software and Information Industry Association said it welcomes the White House’s decision to include many stakeholders in crafting the proposal but ultimately can’t “endorse this proposal as a legislative initiative,” SIAA president Ken Wasch said in a statement.

“These principles can be made more specific through industry sector codes of conduct, and compliance can be assured through the existing authority of the Federal Trade Commission,” he said.

T-Mobile plans network investment: T-Mobile said Thursday that it plans to invest $4 billion in its network to “improve existing voice and data coverage and pave the way for long term evolution service in 2013.”

In a statement, chief executive Philipp Humm said that the company will transform its network in the next two years, following the failure of a proposed merger with AT&T.

“We want to be known for delivering the best value in wireless because of the advanced technology we deliver at an affordable price,” Humm said in the release.

LightSquared to cut jobs: LightSquared said Wednesday that it will cut 45 percent of its jobs, around 149 positions, in the wake of the FCC’s decision to prevent the broadband firm from expanding its network. Bloomberg reported that the company, which has around 330 workers, hired many of the affected employees in preparation for more work on its network, before it was derailed by a controversy over interference with global-positioning satellites.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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