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The Federal Trade Commission released the final agenda for its September 8, 2022 forum seeking public comment on the harms stemming from commercial surveillance and lax data security practices and whether new rules are needed to protect people’s privacy and information. The FTC recently announced an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) seeking public comment as it explores possible new rules cracking down on lax data security and commercial surveillance, which is the business of collecting, analyzing, and profiting from information about people. 

The Commercial Surveillance and Data Security Public Forum will explore a wide range of concerns that the FTC is seeking comment on through its ANPR. For example, some companies fail to adequately secure the vast troves of consumer data they collect, putting that information at risk to hackers and data thieves. Other concerns relate to the growing body of evidence that some commercial surveillance-based services may be addictive to children and lead to a wide variety of mental health and social harms, and the automated systems that analyze data companies collect, which are prone to errors, bias, and inaccuracy.

FTC Chair Lina M. Khan will provide opening remarks to kick off the forum. She will be followed by a staff presentation on how the ANPR process works and remarks by Commissioners Rebecca Kelly Slaughter and Alvaro Bedoya. The event will also feature two panel discussions where the FTC will hear from industry representatives and consumer advocates. The forum will end with a public comment session.

Information about the forum’s participants can be found on the event page. The forum, which begins at 2 p.m. ET, will be held virtually and webcast on the FTC’s website. Registration is not required to watch the webcast.

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