Last June, the technology industry cringed as California’s legislature passed a new data privacy law that will give residents more control over how their personal data is used by Facebook, Google and other big companies. Now it is bracing for a wave of action by other states, at least eight of which are considering similar data privacy measures.
The latest arrived on Friday in Washington state—home of tech giants Amazon and Microsoft. A state senator introduced the Washington Privacy Act, which will give residents of the state the right to update and correct personal data, move it to other websites and block its sale to third parties without consent. The bill and others like it in state legislatures around the country have been prompted partly by a lack of progress by Congress in passing a federal privacy law. It isn’t clear how many, if any, of the state proposals will become law.