On August 8, 2019, the FTC announced that Unrollme Inc. (“Unrollme”), an email management company, agreed to settle allegations the company deceived consumers about how it accesses and uses their personal emails. Unrollme offered users a service whereby the company would help unsubscribe users from unwanted subscription emails. In connection with this service, Unrollme required users to provide the company with access to their email accounts. The FTC alleged that Unrollme falsely told consumers it would not “touch” their personal emails. In fact, the FTC alleged, Unrollme shared its users’ email receipts (“e-receipts”) (i.e., emails sent to consumers following a completed transaction) with its parent company, Slice Technologies, Inc. The FTC’s complaint alleged that the parent company used information from the e-receipts (such as the user’s name, address, and information about products or services the individual purchased) for purposes of its own market research analytics products.
On August 15, 2019, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) announced that it had launched an investigation into the use of live facial recognition technology at the King’s Cross development in London. This follows a letter sent by the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to the owner of the development inquiring as to whether the use of the software was legal. The company responsible for the technology said it was used for the purposes of public safety.
On August 8, 2019, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit allowed a class action brought by Illinois residents to proceed against Facebook under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (“BIPA”) (740 ICLS 14/1, et seq.).
On August 7, 2019, the Centre for Information Policy Leadership (“CIPL”) at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP issued a white paper titled Key Issues Relating to Standard Contractual Clauses for International Transfers and the Way Forward for New Standard Contractual Clauses under the GDPR (the “White Paper”). The White Paper was submitted to the European Commission as part of its ongoing work to update EU Standard Contractual Clauses for international transfers (“SCCs”).
On August 2, 2019, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu signed into law SB 194 (the “Bill”), which requires insurers licensed in the state (“licensees”) to put in place data security programs and report cybersecurity events. Although the Bill takes effect January 1, 2020, licensees have one year from the effective date to implement relevant cybersecurity requirements and two years from the effective date to ensure that their third-party vendors also implement appropriate safeguards to protect and secure the information systems and nonpublic information accessible to, or held by, the third-party service providers.
On July 29, 2019, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the “CJEU”) released its judgment in case C-40/17, Fashion ID GmbH & Co. KG vs. Verbraucherzentrale NRW eV. The Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf (Oberlandesgericht Düsseldorf) requested a preliminary ruling from the CJEU on several provisions of the former EU Data Protection Directive of 1995, which was still applicable to the case since the court proceedings had started before the implementation of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”).
On July 29, 2019, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) announced the 10 projects that it has selected, out of 64 applicants, to participate in its sandbox. The sandbox, for which applications opened in April 2019, is designed to support organizations in developing innovative products and services with a clear public benefit. The ICO aims to assist the 10 organizations in ensuring that the risks associated with the projects’ use of personal data is mitigated. The selected participants cover a number of sectors, including travel, health, crime, housing and artificial intelligence.
On July 25, 2019, the French Data Protection Authority (the “CNIL”) published new template records of data processing activities pursuant to Article 30 of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”). This provision requires organizations subject to the GDPR to maintain internal records of data processing activities. The CNIL recalled that such records are a key accountability tool under the GDPR for identifying, understanding and controlling data processing activities. Setting up and maintaining these records provide businesses with the opportunity to ask the right questions and limit privacy risks under the GDPR. According to the CNIL, this is also a useful moment to set up a data protection compliance action plan.
On July 23, 2019, New York City Council members introduced Int. 1632-2019 (the “Bill”), an amendment to the administrative code of New York City that would prohibit telecommunications carriers and mobile applications from sharing a customer’s location data if such data was collected from a device in the five boroughs.
On July 25, 2019, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law Senate Bill S5575B (the “Bill”), an amendment to New York’s breach notification law (the “Act”). The Bill expands the Act’s definition of “breach of the security of the system” and the types of information (i.e., “private information”) covered by the Act, and makes certain changes to the Act’s requirements for breach notification.