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At CES, Feds prod companies to expand privacy efforts

Matt Hamblen | Jan. 7, 2016
FTC chief says consumer opt-in agreements need to be clarified.

She called out lengthy and legalistic warranties that come with new devices and apps, which most consumers just click through quickly. "We need to do a lot more work in this area; most [consumers] are concerned how the information is used."

Ramirez is personally concerned about sharing some of her own personal health data: she pulled out an older, small unconnected pedometer that she uses to measure her steps, noting that she prefers it over a smarter, connected device like a Fitbit. She said she was using an "old school pedometer; I don't want to share."

The FTC has brought 50 cases against organizations over data security lapses in recent months, and Ramirez said such actions show that companies need to have reasonable security protections in place to protect the personal information collected and used.

"We're here to protect consumers and if companies run afoul of the law, we're going to take action," Ramirez said.

 

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