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Legislative Memo

Darren Suarez
Director of Government Affairs
T 518.465.7511
www.bcnys.org

BILL:

A.9480 (Dinowitz)

Support

SUBJECT:

Mandating certain information disclosed by businesses

 

DATE:

May 27, 2014

 

This bill would amend the general business law by adding a new section 391-t to require, a specific administrative processes for businesses that disclose a consumer's information to a third party, and outlines enforcement provisions relating to such disclosure processes.

This legislation is based on California's “Shine the Light" law. During the nearly ten years that the California law has been in effect the law has been a burdened for businesses, and as reported by the State Privacy & Security Coalition is almost never used by consumers. In the past ten years no other state has passed a similar law.

It has recently been reported that numerous class action lawsuits have been filled alleging that companies' websites fail to provide notices regarding disclosure of personal information under California's “Shine the Light" law. None of these suits allege that the companies are misusing personal information. All simply assert that the companies fail properly to identify a method for obtaining a disclosure of how the company shares information. The costs in California for non-compliance could be substantial—the statute provides for penalties of $500 or $3,000 per violation, depending on whether the violation is willful, plus attorney's fees.

For the reasons discussed above, The Business Council strongly recommends that members of the Assembly Consumer Affairs and Protection vote against approval of this legislation.