Chapter 9: Implementing effective digital privacy policy: the road ahead in post-pandemic times
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COVID-19 profoundly impacted the role of digital technology and media in our everyday lives. Digital technologies were seen as critical to help stop the spread of the virus (e.g., through contact tracing), and private-public partnerships provided key but sometimes failed opportunities to develop transparency rules and build public trust. As we approach a "new normal" in the post-pandemic world, the blurred lines between home and work use of digital devices will persist. Consumers will continue providing personally-identifiable information to a range of commercial providers, who in turn will have various levels of digital privacy protection in place - often with little or no government guidance or oversight. While there has been traction in some states to establish digital privacy legislation, there are multiple barriers to the passage of such legislation at the federal level, including the question of federal preemption and whether to permit or prohibit private rights of action against digital privacy violators. There must be both focus and resolve throughout the government to provide workable approaches to enhance digital trust and responsible business practices.

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