Senate Committee Pushes for Stronger Cloud Privacy Laws

By John Wagley

Companies need ECPA reform to continue to innovate and build cloud-based systems, said Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith. Organizations need to be more “transparent with consumers” about privacy to provide necessary customer “confidence” in cloud-based products.

Google, one of many companies lobbying to increase ECPA-reform efforts in the past year, recently announced it received 4,287 data requests from the U.S. government in the past six months, up from 3,580 in the previous six-month period. (Google says its statistics do not represent all types of requests; it also does not publish data on request compliance rates.)

After noting that neither Mr. Baker nor another Obama Administration witness had formal ECPA-related recommendations, Senator Sheldon urged for more administration proactivity. “It’s a little late to come before a congressional committee and not have a proposal unless you want to be out of the debate and be commentators.” The Judiciary Committee intends to make ECPA reform a “priority,” said Senator Leahy.

♦ Photo by MiiiSH/Flickr


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