FTC to Examine Effects of Big Data on Low Income and Underserved Consumers at September Workshop #00061

Submission Number:
00061
Commenter:
Jeffrey Chester
Organization:
U.S. PIRG and the Center for Digital Democracy
State:
District of Columbia
Initiative Name:
FTC to Examine Effects of Big Data on Low Income and Underserved Consumers at September Workshop
Matter Number:

P145406

Big Data: A Tool for Inclusion or Exclusion? Project No. P145406 U.S. PIRG Education Fund and Center for Digital Democracy U.S. PIRG Education Fund and the Center for Digital Democracy (CDD) respectfully submit these additional comments to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). A set of regulatory and other safeguards is urgently required to ensure that contemporary “Big Data”-driven financial services are used in an equitable, transparent, and responsible manner. All Americans, especially those who confront daily challenges to their economic security, should be assured that their lives will be enhanced—not undermined—by the new digital-data financial services marketplace. A closer critical examination of the commercial information infrastructure in the U.S. reveals a set of well-developed and interconnected data collection and use practices that few consumers are aware of—let alone have consented to. While the commission’s September 2014 workshop explored some of the key issues, it did not sufficiently examine the implications of current “Big Data” business practices. U.S. PIRG Education Fund and CDD urge the commission to issue a final report that addresses the issues we identify...