New Privacy Bill Would Restrict Behavioral Advertising

Bipartisan lawmakers on Sunday unveiled a discussion draft of a sweeping privacy bill that could restrict companies' ability to serve targeted ads to consumers.

The proposed American Privacy Rights Act of 2024, released by Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-Washington) and House Energy And Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Washington), would require companies to allow consumers to opt out of targeted advertising based on non-sensitive data that is linkable to individuals or devices.

The measure would also prohibit companies from transferring consumers' “sensitive” data for targeted advertising without their explicit consent.

The bill's relatively broad definition of "sensitive" data includes geolocation data, information about health care, biometrics, and web-browsing data collected across sites and over time.



The proposed law defines "targeted advertising" as ads served on known or predicted interests -- but does not include contextual ads and some first-party ads.

The bill also would prohibit social networks with more than $3 billion in global revenue to obtain consumers' consent before transferring data from them collected over time. 

The draft bill also includes data-minimization provisions that would prohibit companies from gathering more information than needed to fulfill a request or communicate with a customer.

If it is passed, the measure would override state privacy laws.

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