The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced that it will host a two-day international conference to consider the data practices of companies. The FTC will co-host the conference with the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. The conference, titled “Securing Personal Data in the Global Economy,” will focus on data security issues in global information environments and will bring together public officials, technology experts, consumer advocates, academics, and industry representatives. The conference will be held in Washington, DC on March 16th through 17th, 2009.

The agenda for the conference will include six sessions covering a wide array of topics. One session will broadly identify data security issues implicated by the transfer of data among different legal jurisdictions. Another session will address the conflicts of law issues associated with multi-jurisdiction transfers while a different session will discuss whether certain data, such as sensitive information, should be subject to a heightened level of security. Other panels will review the different data security legal regimes and discuss whether a single international standard could be created that protects consumers without unduly hindering the global information economy. Finally, another panel will examine current industry data security practices with an emphasis on data breach response practices.