Do Not Track Kids Act of 2011

Today, the co-chairs of the Congressional Privacy Caucus,  Rep. Markey (Mass ) and Rep. Barton (TX),  released a discussion draft entitled the “Do Not Track Kids Act of 2011.”.  According to Rep. Markey, “for millions of kids today, the Internet is their new 21st century playground – they learn, play, and connect with others every day. The Internet presents a wide array of opportunities to communicate and access entertainment that were unimaginable only a few years ago. But kids growing up in this online environment also need protection from the dangers that can lurk in cyberspace.”

The draft bill amends the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.  The act would extend coverage to teens and include mobile devices.  Specifically, this act calls for:

•  Requiring online companies to explain the types of personal information collected, how that information is used and disclosed, and the policies for collection of personal information;

• Requiring online companies to obtain parental consent for collection of children’s personal information;

• Prohibiting online companies from using personal information of children and teens for targeted marketing purposes;

• Establishing a “Digital Marketing Bill of Rights for Teens” that limits the collection of personal information of teens, including geolocation information of children and teens;

• Creating an “Eraser Button” for parents and children by requiring  permit users to eliminate publicly available personal information content when technologically feasible.

The draft bill is meant for discussion by lawmakers and subject to changes.  But after last week’s Sony data breach and Apple & Google tracking locations via mobile phones, we may see privacy legislation passed in 2011.