Alphabet adds its voice to internet regulation debate, appoints new privacy officer
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Alphabet adds its voice to internet regulation debate, appoints new privacy officer

Internet giant Alphabet, the parent company of Google, has appointed long-time privacy lawyer Keith Enright as chief privacy officer. That’s a particularly pertinent role given the attention Big Tech has received so far this year, and it comes as the company proposes its own set of internet regulations for discussion with U.S. lawmakers.

Alphabet’s share price has appreciated by 13% so far this year

graph 2709 alphabet

SOURCE: Yahoo Finance

Enright’s new position will see him craft the company’s privacy policies going forward, and he sums it up thusly: “my team’s goal is to help you enjoy the benefits of technology, wile remaining in control of your privacy.” Yesterday, he took his first steps and testified before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

In a blog post published Monday, he continued: “now, more than any other time I have worked in this field, there is real momentum to develop baseline rules of the road for data protection. Google welcomes this, and supports comprehensive, baseline privacy regulation.”

Google’s proposed regulations contain similar material to other tech companies that are hoping to influence regulations that are looking increasingly likely. They include giving users the legal right to have their personal data “corrected, deleted, and made available for export in a machine-readable format” when practical. They also support transparency over data sharing with third-parties, which would have “reasonable limitations”.

Facebook, Twitter, and other companies have also signalled that they would welcome federal regulation – provided it was the ‘right’ regulation (as yet, those companies haven’t put anything specific on the table). Industry groups like The Internet Association (of which Google is a member) are united in their desire to have a say in the debate – given Europe’s strict approach (GDPR) and the possibility that individual states could end up drafting their own laws (effectively multiplying the number of jurisdictions Big Tech has to worry about), embracing federal regulation looks like the best option for Big Tech.


Dominion holds Alphabet in its Global Trends Managed Fund.

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