The alarm of members of Congress and senators was caused by data on the activities of Amazon.
Five U.S. lawmakers have called for the adoption of federal law on consumer privacy after the publication last Friday of a Reuters material concerning the activities of Amazon to collect personal data of consumers.
“(The company) Amazon has launched a shameful campaign to repeal privacy laws, while (owned by) her devices… they are watching our lives,” Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal, who took part in bipartisan negotiations on privacy legislation, tweeted on Friday.
“Now this is a classic move of big technology companies: to use money and armies of lobbyists to secretly fight significant reforms, publicly declaring their support,” the legislator notes.
According to him, the revelations that have become public emphasize the need for bipartisan action to strengthen privacy protection.
Democratic Senator Ron Wyden, who has introduced several bills on the issue of privacy in recent years, said that, as the Reuters publication showed, companies, including Amazon, “spend millions on weakening state laws,” hoping that Congress will also soften federal legislation in this regard, “until it becomes useless.”
“Congress needs to prove Amazon wrong and pass a law that will finally prevent large corporations from (committing) abuses when using our personal data,” Wyden stressed.
Amazon did not directly respond to criticism from the legislator. She only confirmed her statement cited in the Reuters publication, noting that she prefers federal privacy legislation to a “patchwork quilt” of regulations at the state level. The company called for the adoption of a federal privacy law requiring “transparency regarding data processing, prohibiting the sale of personal data without consent and ensuring that consumers have the right to request access to their personal information and delete it.”
A member of the House of Representatives, Jan Schakowsky (also belonging to the Democratic Party), who heads the Consumer Protection Subcommittee, stated that the Reuters revelations show how Amazon is working to block consumer privacy legislation, “declaring support” for such rules.
Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn and Congresswoman Suzan DelBeny (Democrat) also said that the Reuters findings indicate the need for action to protect consumers at the federal level.