Illinois Lawmakers Consider Right to Know Act

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Illinois lawmakers are considering a new law that would increase the protection of personal information online. House Bill 2774 would require online companies to disclose to consumers what data has been collected on them and shared with third parties. The proposed law would also require the online companies to provide an e-mail address or toll-free telephone number so customers can request or obtain this information.

The proposed bill comes as federal online privacy regulations issued at the end of the Obama administration (that hadn’t yet taken effect) were repealed by Congress and signed off on by President Trump.  The new law would have required internet service providers get consent before sharing or selling your web browsing history.

As a result, Illinois is now one of ten states taking measures into their own hands as they introduce internet privacy legislation. Other states include: Connecticut, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New York, Washington, and Wisconsin.

The Right to Know Act passed out of House committee on March 30, 2017 and has been placed on the calendar for a 2nd reading. Illinois is also considering two other companion privacy bills. The Geolocation Privacy Protection Act (HB 3449) would prevent companies from collecting, storing, or disclosing information from a location-based mobile application without the user’s consent. The Microphone-Enabled Devices Act (HB 3819) would require a user’s consent before turning on the microphone on a user’s device and would provide the right to sue for damages, attorney’s fees, and injunctive relief for privacy violations.