Report on NTIA Meeting on December 17, 2012
As the enforcement environment heightens, industry leaders have been working diligently with consumer groups to reach common ground regarding the best practices for compliance vis a vis priacy and mobile app disclosures. As reported in our Edwards Wildman client alert, in March 2012, President Obama called for the Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration Committee (NTIA) to hold multi-stakeholder meetings to develop industry codes of conduct regarding privacy best practices. The President also encouraged the FTC to create a “safe harbor” for those companies that voluntarily adopt a code of conduct against future enforcement. The FTC has indicated that provided a company follows the industry code, this will beneficially impact the company in the event of future enforcement activities. We have said that clients should be part of this process and Edwards Wildman is participating to help ensure that industry perspectives (from companies to app developers to ad networks) are represented. The NTIA convened meetings starting July 2012 to address mobile privacy. The most recent meeting took place today on December 17, 2012. Edwards Wildman is covering these meetings and is part of the committee.
Over the past six months, the NTIA multi-stakeholder privacy app committee has developed a working draft of the types of disclosures that should be included as a “best practice” for apps. The December 17, 2012 draft document and draft short screen notices depicting how privacy disclosures should be made going forward will be further refined at the January 2013 meeting.