Democrats introduce bill banning collection of reproductive health data

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Rep. Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.) and the senses. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) on Tuesday introduced legislation prohibiting companies from keeping users’ reproductive health data without their consent.

The bill would also give people the power to demand that companies disclose and delete data, as well as the power to sue companies for breaking the law.

The legislation was drafted in response to a Supreme Court draft leaked in May that showed the court was prepared to overturn Roe v. Wade, a decision that would trigger abortion bans or tough restrictions in a number of US states.

“This is some of the most sensitive and personal data out there. He deserves the highest level of privacy protection the government can provide and our bill does that,” Jacobs told The Hill.

Democrats’ My Body, My Data Act would protect personal data collected by entities not currently covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), including data collected by apps, cellphones and search engines. research.

Privacy groups and abortion advocates have warned in the months since the explosive Supreme Court leak that data from period-tracking apps and other information could be used to target women. people seeking abortions and possibly lead to criminal prosecution in states where the procedures would become illegal without the federal government. protections.

“Right now, there’s no real protection in place for this type of data,” Jacobs said.

The bill would prohibit regulated entities from collecting, retaining, using or disclosing personal reproductive or sexual health information without the individual’s “express consent”.

It would direct the Federal Trade Commission to enforce the law and make rules to implement the law.

Jacobs said management is “monitoring this closely.” She also noted that on the Senate side, the bill is co-sponsored by Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.).

The bill is being introduced not only as Democrats brace for the seemingly imminent reversal of Roe v. Wade, but also as lawmakers on both sides of the aisle reignited debates over privacy legislation.

A draft of a comprehensive data privacy bill was released earlier this month. The project has bipartisan support in the House and Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee ranking member Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) in the upper house.

The full bill, however, lacks Cantwell’s key support.

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