California Passes New Online Privacy and Data Amendments

The Paralegal Resource
October 30, 2013 — 1,447 views  
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Starting January 1, 2014, the state of California is set to expand its requirements for data breach notification under a new law. Along with this, the state legislature has passed two additional amendments addressing several data privacy issues. These three new laws, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, will also require the change in privacy policy for those who operate websites and online services. This also means that legal teams for online businesses must start making preparations for these of changes.

Changes in Data Breach Notification Law

The change in California's data breach notification law will require the disclosure of any breach in the online account information of users by California businesses as well as businesses that own the data of California residents. Amendments will be made to the state's Civil Code 1798.82, making the disclosures mandatory.

With this new law, businesses can make preparations by performing an audit on their security measures and removing non-essential user information from their servers. They should also make it a point to only share user information with third parties when it's necessary to provide products or services.

Changes in “Do Not Track” Disclosure Requirements

The California state legislation has also passed another law that will require website operators or operators of online services to make additional disclosures in their privacy policies. They will need to post the effective date including detailed descriptions in terms of the type of personal information they collect and the third parties with whom they share the information. They also need to include descriptions of how users can review or change their personal information and how they will get notification about any privacy policy change.

According to this new law, website operators and operators of online services should also disclose how they respond to and handle “do not track” signals and related tools and settings. Businesses must make it a point to review their entire privacy policy to ensure that they comply with the latest legal amendments.

Improved Privacy Rights for Minors in California

Starting January 1, 2015, a new law will come into effect to address the privacy of California minors. This will require operators of websites or mobile applications to grant certain permissions to minors in terms of their own information and data. With this new law, minors will be permitted to remove content they post on the site of mobile app and even request removal of the same. This new law also addresses the issue of marketing certain products to minors.

Before this law comes into effect, businesses can prepare themselves by reviewing the type of products they market or advertise on their sites. They must also update their policies and develop a proper plan regarding how to process requests from minors for content removal.

The Paralegal Resource