Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Data Privacy: Chamber testifies in support of privacy protections that do not harm competitiveness

Data privacy regulation will impact companies of all sizes and industries at a time of widespread budgetary constraints and accelerating revenue and job loss. The cost and operational burden of any new business regulation must be viewed, in part, through this lens. Yet ensuring data protection is a goal shared by all – and the Chamber believes this issue can be addressed without significantly impacting the competitiveness of the state. As such, the Chamber will continue working to advance data privacy policy that protects personal information and the Massachusetts economy.

Last month, the Chamber testified in favor of Senate Bill 173, which would help to protect critical data by:
  • Aligning state data protection policy with federal regulation to establish a consistent regulatory regime and facilitate compliance for Massachusetts employers;
  • Providing flexibility in technology, enabling employers to utilize a variety of next-generation technologies and methods to meet their data protection requirements;
  • Requiring scalability in the regulation to avoid a costly and cumbersome one-size-fits-all approach to compliance; and
  • Creating separate regulations for small businesses to reflect their unique cost, resource and data situations and employ a more risk-based approach to compliance.
The Chamber believes Senate Bill 173 captures the essence of sound data protection policy. To bring outliers up to industry standard, rather than penalizing those companies already employing best practices. To reflect the time, expense, and resource required of regulated companies seeking to comply, rather than heaping costly, process-laden requirements onto companies amidst an economic crisis.

View the Chamber's complete policy agenda here.

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