According to a new study by YouGov on behalf of Microsoft, the United States has fallen far behind the rest of the world as far as data privacy protection is concerned, with 90 percent of respondents saying they are worried about sharing their information.
Microsoft study on lack of privacy protection laws in U.S
“Trust is fragile, and consumers have plenty of reasons to be wary of how their data is used,” said a top Microsoft executive Julie Brill who also believes companies and government aren’t doing enough to protect the privacy of personal information.
“Today, it is simply too difficult for people to find out what personal data is collected about them or how it will be used,” she added.
‘Lack of strong national privacy laws’
In the past several months or perhaps years, high-profile data breaches such as the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal and stories about the misuse of personal data have fueled up trust issues among users especially when it comes to sharing data with government and Internet companies.
As per Microsoft, one of the biggest reasons behind these trust issues in countries like the United States has a lot to do with the lack of strong national privacy laws.
Who can you trust?
A couple of years ago, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect. Since then, several including Brazil, India, Japan, Kenya, South Africa, South Korea, and Thailand have either revised or proposed new frameworks for privacy protection in those countries,
Microsoft also emphasizes the fact that more than 130 countries and jurisdictions have enacted privacy laws, unlike the United States. Microsoft believes current privacy protection laws in the United States that are more than 20 years old are limited to certain types of information.
According to the study, a majority of the Americans are in favor of stronger privacy protection laws, with 7 out of 10 respondents saying they don’t think the government does enough to keep their personal data private.
Trust is shifting powers!
Microsoft has also warned that if the United States fails to act soon, the balance of power on data privacy protection issues will “shift away from Washington, D.C., and move to Brussels, Berlin, New Delhi and Tokyo.”
However, legislation such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) includes provisions to uphold some of the individual rights granted by GDPR.