Privacy: California’s Right to Know Act of 2013: Disclosure of a Customer’s Personal Information



California in 2003 has previously recognized the importance of providing Californians with transparency about how their personal information has been shared by businesses by enacting Section 1798.83 of Civil Code into Law. It requires a business to disclose whom it has a relationship with when disclosing information to 3rd parties, upon customer request.

In 2003 the law declared:

“For free market forces to have a role in shaping the privacy practices of California businesses and for ‘opt-in’ and ‘opt-out’ remedies to be effective, Californians must be more than vaguely informed that a business might share personal information with third parties. Consumers must, for these reasons and pursuant to Section 1 of Article 1 of the California Constitution, be better informed about what kinds of personal information are purchased by businesses for direct marketing purposes. With these specifics, consumers can knowledgeably choose to opt-in or opt-out or choose among businesses that disclose information to third parties for direct marketing purposes on the basis of how protective the business is of consumers’ privacy.”

This bill changes to include a copy of that information shared upon customer request and names and contact information for all 3rd parties. Careful consideration to identity would need to be taken so that this information couldn’t be fraudulently obtained.

Many companies are now using software to organize personal information to share with 3rd parties, and in addition to what information is being shared, we should be able to know how it’s being shared abstractly. This could be done by being able to read the software source code used to search massive records of personal information. Furthermore, access to source code, is improtant for a free market, so that options exist within a software technology. If we can know how are information is being used in great detail, yet are unable to have an option otherwise, it further emphasises that we’re not free.

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