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Federal Data Privacy Regulations?

Are we finally getting federal data privacy regulations?


President Biden recently issued an Executive Order permitting the Department of Justice to regulate the export of Americans’ data to safeguard sensitive personal information from falling into the wrong hands. The DOJ also released an associated notice of proposed rulemaking.


The aim of the order and proposed rulemaking is to prevent foreign governments and related persons from accessing and exploiting American’s sensitive data for activities such as espionage and disinformation campaigns that pose national security concerns.


Here are some of the key takeaways:


(1)   A wide range of sensitive personal data is covered, including genomic, biometric, health, financial, and geolocation data.


(2)   The order and proposed rulemaking contemplate prohibiting transactions by which data brokers and other parties sell bulk sensitive personal data to certain foreign governments and related persons as a first step to mitigate security risks.


(3)    The order and proposed rulemaking then contemplate creation of additional restrictions on transactions such as vendor, employment, and investment agreements that often allow foreign governments and related person with indirect access to sensitive information.


(4)   While DOJ has proposed implementation, the actual rules have not yet been written so DOJ is seeking input from the public to help it best tailor the rules to avoid unintended consequences.


This move demonstrates the increasing recognition by leaders of the importance of protecting Americans' privacy for national security reasons.

Videos and content are for educational purposes only, not to provide specific legal advice.


DOJ officer with mask and hoodie on laptop with coffee next to him on a folder. Laptop is on wood desk and he is setting on a chair. Around him are different electronic devices everywhere.



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