FTC seeks band-aid solution for protection of consumer privacy

Friday, April 06, 2012 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: consumer privacy, FTC, protections

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the federal government's chief consumer protection agency, has the right idea in wanting to crack down on the invasion of our privacy by companies who buy and sell our personal information, but the approach it has chosen to address the problem is more of a band-aid than a fix.

The agency last month called on Congress to enact new measures regulating data brokers - private firms that gather and trade a wide array of personal and financial information about tens of millions of American consumers, from both online and offline sources.

But rather than prevent the collection of that information in the first place without your permission, the FTC is only seeking legislation that "would give consumers access to information collected about them and allow them to correct and update such data," The New York Times reported.

Granted, the agency has also issued a warning to data miners at technology and advertising companies (Google and Facebook come to mind) to voluntarily provide a satisfactory Do Not Track option for consumers and users; it would support additional legislation that would force such companies to comply. What happens with your personal information between now and then, however, is anyone's guess, but if history is a guide, count on your personal Web-surfing and shopping habits to continue to be tracked.

'Recommending' your rights be guaranteed

As is usual for a government agency, the FTC has complied a thick new volume of proposed new "guidelines" aimed at getting data miners to, essentially, put themselves out of business voluntarily.

Titled Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change, these guidelines purport to accomplish what the Constitution's Fourth Amendment was supposed to guarantee: protection of personal privacy. In announcing the publication, FTC described it as "a final report setting forth best practices for businesses to protect the privacy of American consumers and give them greater control over the collection and use of their personal data."

"If companies adopt our final recommendations for best practices - and many of them already have - they will be able to innovate and deliver creative new services that consumers can enjoy without sacrificing their privacy," said the agency's chairman, Jon Leibowitz. "We are confident that consumers will have an easy to use and effective Do Not Track option by the end of the year because companies are moving forward expeditiously to make it happen and because lawmakers will want to enact legislation if they don't."

The agency is recommending "Congress consider enacting general privacy legislation, data security and breach notification legislation, and data broker legislation," according to the FTC Web site.

Your personal information - just another commodity

On the one side there are the data miners - Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Experian and Acxiom - which blatantly mine and sell personal information as though they have a natural right to it. On the other side, of course, are groups like the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Electronic Privacy Information Center and publications like NaturalNews who think the Constitution's privacy protections are inviolable.

"The government's Do Not Track efforts are likely to collide with the desire of companies to continue the lucrative business of collecting, using and sharing information about the people who use their services," The New York Times reported. "Although these businesses say they support limits on using this information, they generally still want to be able to collect it."

There is much wrong with this picture, but a couple of basic premises come immediately to mind.

First, it's an abomination that the Constitution isn't already protecting consumers from having their personal information mined and sold like a commodity. That is, of course, what the letter and spirit of the Fourth Amendment was supposed to achieve.

Second, it's not the role of a federal agency to "recommend" that the nation's elected leaders protect essential rights and liberties. It's the role of Congress and the president, along with the federal judiciary, to ensure that such protections not only remain in place but are enforced. Anything that accomplishes less is not a solution at all but a constitutional cop-out.

American consumers should not - via federal agency or any other entity - have to beg for their rights to be protected. But that's become the accepted norm; after decades of unchallenged federal overreach, Americans have been conditioned to think our basic Bill of Rights are subject to the definition and approval of those who mean to rule us rather than automatic guarantees of liberty and freedom.

Sources for this article include:




Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.

Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support NaturalNews.com

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite NaturalNews.com with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...


Now Available at ShopNaturalNews.com

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...


Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...


Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through NaturalNews.com, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at www.StorableOrganics.com

Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of NaturalNews.com, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source: Alexa.com)

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.