[In Brief] Federal Agencies Pulling Out the Stops to Regulate Mobile Privacy

There is a full-court press underway among federal agencies to regulate the privacy of mobile applications.  Just a few examples:

  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a Public Notice requesting comments on wireless service providers’ privacy and data security practices with respect to information stored on their customers’ mobile communications devices. The comment period is now open. Comments are due by July 13, 2012, and reply comments due by July 30, 2012.
  • On April 26, 2012, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) hosted a workshop entitled “Paper, Plastic … or Mobile? An FTC Workshop on Mobile Payments,” to examine the use of mobile payments in the marketplace and how emerging technologies affect consumers. The workshop consisted of presentations and panels with representatives from business, law, finance, and consumer advocacy organizations.
  • On July 12, 2012, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will convene stakeholders from business, industry, academia and consumer groups in Washington, DC to develop a privacy code of conduct focused on mobile applications. NTIA is a part of the U.S. Department of Commerce.  Its effort is a followup on the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights endorsed by the Obama Administration in February 2012.