Comments of the R Street Institute

In response to the Federal Trade Commission’s request for comments dated June 20, 2018, the R Street Institute respectfully submits the following comments. Submitted in advance of the hearings planned to be held, these are intended to identify topics for those hearings, and will likely be supplemented by more detailed analysis afterward.

This comment is one of several that R Street is submitting, pursuant to the Commission’s request of a separate comment per topic. This comment relates to Topic 5 on the Commission’s remedial authority to deter unfair and deceptive conduct in privacy and data security matters.

Privacy and data security are increasingly vital to the American public. The Commission has done an admirable job in these areas by offering recommendations for business and policymakers, as well as by pursuing legal actions where appropriate, but not all these efforts have been successful. Indeed, the recent setback in its case against LabMD suggests that significant changes may need to be made in how the Commission pursues privacy and data security cases going forward.

In the upcoming hearings, we therefore encourage the Commission to consider at least the following topics.