White House Announcement Sets Course for Privacy


Posted by Fred Humphries
Vice President, U.S. Government Affairs, Microsoft

Consumer trust is vital to the growth of a vibrant Internet, and respect for privacy – putting people first – is essential to earning and maintaining that trust. Today’s release by the White House of their framework signifies an important milestone in the evolution of privacy interests of Americans and individuals around the world.  

The Administration’s policy promotes an environment of transparency and meaningful privacy choices. Further, we are hopeful that the policy’s establishment of a robust stakeholder dialogue will lead to more specific solutions and help overcome challenges faster. We support the Administration in this effort.

Microsoft views today’s announcement as essential to a comprehensive approach to privacy that includes federal privacy legislation, technology tools for consumers, effective self-regulation, and all stakeholders working together on initiatives to improve privacy practices. For these efforts to be successful, the private sector needs to play a critical role, and important work has already begun. 

Since 2006, Microsoft has endorsed the adoption of comprehensive federal privacy legislation to establish a baseline set of privacy and security requirements. We have created privacy tools, like Tracking Protection in Internet Explorer, to help keep personal information private when browsing sites across the Web; Internet Explorer was the first major browser to respond to the Federal Trade Commission’s call for a do-not-track mechanism.

Additionally, Microsoft has been part of the self-regulatory program that is being recognized today by the Administration and the Federal Trade Commission that was developed by the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA). In keeping with the DAA goals, and to further advance the privacy interests of consumers, Microsoft will begin work to use the do-not-track browser signal as an additional method for users to opt-out of interest-based advertising under the DAA program.

We appreciate the Administration’s leadership in this area. At Microsoft, we are committed to fostering innovation in a way that respects individual privacy. The Administration should be commended for taking steps that further that goal.

Comments (2)

  1. Rwolf says:

    Canada, Britain & U.S. Government want to Spy On Its Citizens’/ Electronic Communications?

    The Canadian (Commons recent Bill C-30) would—give any Canadian police officer without a warrant—the power to request Internet service providers turn over customer information (see section 17 of C-30) cause the same loss of electronic privacy and civil liberties that British Government recently proposed—to spy on Brits’ electronic communications. Is it coincidence the British and Canadian proposals appear to mirror legislation U.S. Government said it wanted passed in 2011 to spy on U.S. Citizens?

    Overlooked by mainstream media is that Britain and Canada signed with the U.S Government an array of (Asset Forfeiture Sharing Agreements) to share with Canadian and British Police/Governments assets seized from Brits, Canadians and Americans that resulted from e.g., evidence or information gleaned from electronic surveillance of Citizens’ communications, e.g., emails, faxes, Internet actively, phone records including GPS tracking.

    Compare with U.S. Government’s proposal to electronically monitor, spy on Americans without a warrant—with Canada’s recent eavesdropping (Bill C-30) and British Government’s plan to spy on its Citizens’ electronic communications.

    U.S. Government wants the power to (introduce as evidence) in criminal prosecutions and government civil trials, any phone call record, email or Internet activity. That would open the door for Police to take out of context any innocent—hastily written email, fax or phone call record to allege a crime or violation was committed to cause a person’s arrest, fines and or civil asset forfeiture of their property. There are more than 350 laws and violations that can subject property to government asset forfeiture. Government civil asset forfeiture requires only a civil preponderance of evidence for police to forfeit property, little more than hearsay.

    If the U.S. Justice Department has its way, any information the FBI derives from circumventing the Fourth Amendment, i.e. (no warrant searches) of Web Server Records; a Citizen’s Internet Activity, personal emails; fax / phone calls may be used by the FBI for (fishing expeditions) to issue subpoenas in hopes of finding evidence or to prosecute Citizens for any alleged crime or violation. Consider that neither Congress nor the courts—determined what Bush II NSA electronic surveillance, perhaps illegal could be used by police or introduced into court by government to prosecute Americans criminally or civilly. If U.S. Justice Department is permitted (No-Warrant) surveillance of all electronic communications, it is problematic state and local law enforcement agencies and private government contractors will want access to prior Bush II NSA and other government illegally obtained electronic records not limited to—Americans’ Internet activity; private emails, faxes and phone calls to secure evidence to arrest Americans, assess fines and or civilly forfeit their homes, businesses and other assets under Title 18USC and other laws. Of obvious concern, what happens to fair justice in America if police become dependent on “Asset Forfeiture” to help pay their salaries and budget operating costs?

    The “Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2000” (effectively eliminated) the “five year statue of limitations” for Government Civil Asset Forfeiture: the statute now runs five years (from the date) police allege they “learned” an asset became subject to forfeiture. It is foreseeable should (no warrant) government electronic surveillance be approved; police will relentlessly sift through business and Citizen’s (government retained Internet data), emails and phone communications to discover possible crimes or civil violations. A corrupt despot U.S. Government can too easily use no-warrant—(seized emails, Internet data and phone call information) to blackmail Americans, corporations and others in the same manner Hitler utilized his police state passed laws to extort support for the Nazi fascist government, including getting parliament to pass Hitler’s 1933 Discriminatory Decrees that suspended the Constitutional Freedoms of German Citizens. A Nazi Government threat of “Property Seizure” Asset Forfeiture of an individual or corporation’s assets was usually sufficient to ensure Nazi support.

    Under U.S. federal civil forfeiture laws, a person or business need not be charged with a crime for government to forfeit their property. Most U.S. Citizens, property and business owners that defend their assets against Government Civil Asset Forfeiture claim an “innocent owner defense.” This defense can become a criminal prosecution trap for both guilty and innocent property owners. Any fresh denial of guilt made to government when questioned about committing a crime “even when you did not do the crime” may (involuntarily waive) a defendant’s right to assert in their defense—the “Criminal Statute of Limitations” past for prosecution; any fresh denial of guilt even 30 years after a crime was committed may allow Government prosecutors to use old and new evidence, including information discovered during a Civil Asset Forfeiture Proceeding to launch a criminal prosecution. For that reason many innocent Americans, property and business owners are reluctant to defend their property and businesses against Government Civil Asset Forfeiture.

    Re: waiving Criminal Statute of Limitations: see USC18, Sec.1001, James Brogan V. United States. N0.96-1579. U.S. See paragraph (6) at:

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/…/96-1579.ZC1.html

  2. tcnwsm.net says:

    好 并帮助全球更快地克服挑战 我们支持在这方面的努力

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