Washington state’s new Bill has been amended and strengthened by state house lawmakers to include new opt-out controls and private right to action.

After failing to pass last year due to concerns that it needed stronger safeguards for consumers, the Bill was advanced last Friday by the state House Committee on Civil Rights & Judiciary. 

The new draft extends the rights of consumers to include access to data, power to delete and amend their data, or to opt-out of certain forms of data collection completely, which is consistent with California’s California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)

The draft Bill also includes the right to submit a request to a data controller via a designated authorized agent; or via user-enabled global privacy controls such as browser plug-ins or settings to signal the consumer’s choice to opt-out. 

The text of the legislation states, “These rights will add to, and not subtract from, the consumer protection rights that consumers already have under Washington state law.”

Committee Chair State Rep. Drew Hansen who proposed the draft Bill has said:

“I think this bill is reasonable and moves us forward. California has enacted provisions in this area by initiative. The striking amendment incorporates some of what California has done, aligning some of the definitions closer to what California has done already and is already law.”

Consumer Report applauded the amendments, stating that the draft addresses many of the improvements it recommended in an op-ed published earlier this month.

Justin Brookman, director of technology policy at Consumer Reports, said, “We appreciate that Washington state lawmakers have worked with stakeholders to strengthen the privacy protections in the bill.”

He adds, “We urge legislators to advance the bill, to safeguard the privacy of Washingtonians and provide them with meaningful control over their personal data.”

 Click here to read our summary of the various privacy laws in the US.

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