Submission Number: 00034
Received: 12/2/2010 11:16:01 AM
Commenter: Margaret Hall
Agency: Federal Trade Commission
Initiative: A Preliminary FTC Staff Report on "Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: A Proposed Framework for Businesses and Policymakers"
Attachments: No Attachments
The proposed "do not track" regulation is yet another example of unnecessary gov't interference and unnecessary wasteful spending.
This is an opportunity for the private sector. My browser (Firefox) already has a "cookie blocker"...it would be a simple matter for Microsoft to add one to IE...Google to add one to Chrome...Apple to add one to Safari. In fact, they may already have them! My internet security suite also has tracking cookie protection that treats any tracking cookies that get through Firefox's "cookie safe" like a virus and removes them automatically. So I already have far MORE protection any new "do not track" registry could begin to provide. And what is available to me is available to everyone who uses the internet. Whether to use it does require taking personal responsibility for one's own safety, just as it's one's own responsibility to install AV and firewall software and keep them updated.
So this proposed regulation is not needed! Nor would it work, because so many commercial domains are located outside the US. What would we do if we want to block TRACKING cookies from a retailer or mfr today, but want to search the site 6 months from now? We would not be able to do that because it would be necessary to re-enable cookies--which could NOT be done if that company were on any federal "do not track" list without removing our computer entirely? And what happens when we buy a new computer?
The proposed "do not track" list is just one more example of government "nanny state" interference that would actually allow the government to track the sites we visit by keeping track of who we add to the list.
Bottom line: It's not needed, it's insidious, an unnecessary expense, and it won't work--the worst idea to come along in at least a decade...all of which anyone in the FTC who has even a moderate level of computer literacy should already know without my telling you.