Last month, Europe implemented its General Data Protection Regulation in an effort to protect the data of all individuals within the European Union, with some aspects affecting users worldwide. According to a new report by Axios, the White House is "in the early stages" of figuring out what a federal approach to online data privacy would look like in the United States.

So far, special assistant to President Trump on tech, telecom, and cyber policy Gail Slater has met with industry groups about the issue. Discussions include possible "guardrails" for the use of personal data online, according to a few sources familiar with the talks. Furthermore, Slater has talked about the implementation of GDPR with Dean Garfield, CEO of the Information Technology Industry Council, which represents tech companies like Apple and Google.

white house image wikimedia commons


Slater and the Trump administration have reportedly referred to the U.S. proposal as a "counter-weight to GDPR," aimed at ensuring that the European law doesn't become the global standard of online privacy, sources said. Still, Slater also stated that there is no desire to create a "U.S. clone" of the European rules.

Axios theorized that one possible outcome from the conversations could be an executive order that leads to the development of a privacy framework for U.S. citizens.

One option is an executive order directing one or more agencies to develop a privacy framework. That could direct the National Institute of Standards and Technology, an arm of the Commerce Department, to work with industry and other experts to come up with guidelines, according to two sources.

An executive order could also kick off a public-private partnership to lay out voluntary privacy best practices, which could become de-facto standards, according to sources.

News about the potential new privacy practices comes as "pressure" is being placed on lawmakers in the U.S., following high-profile data breaches like the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal. Beginning with reports in March, it was discovered that Facebook was connected with consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, which itself was tied to Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. Using a survey app called "This Is Your Digital Life," the firm secretly amassed data from millions of Facebook users that targeted and attempted to sway votes in the election.

Slater claimed that "giving consumers more control over their data" and "more access to their data" are high marks of the GDPR, suggesting these aspects would be emphasized in the U.S. law.

"We're talking through what, if anything, the administration could and should be doing" on privacy, Slater said at a conference hosted last month by the National Venture Capital Association

In the wake of GDPR, Apple itself launched a new Data & Privacy website that lets users download all of the data associated with their Apple ID. While the feature was limited to Apple accounts registered in the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland at launch, Apple said it will roll out the service worldwide "in the coming months."

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Top Rated Comments

Schranke Avatar
51 months ago
For some reason I do not trust the US with formulating privacy laws. For a modern western country I think they are some of the worst offenders when it comes to disrespect it.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mmcneil Avatar
51 months ago
I would prefer the European standard become the de facto standard.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dave-Z Avatar
51 months ago
Trump's privacy policy will include free access to all information, no encryption, and of course a consent form to release custody of your children to the government*.

*Kidding... Obviously they won't ask for permission.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chucker23n1 Avatar
51 months ago
I'm all for data privacy. However, to me, when it comes to GDPR, it seems ludicrous, and quite illegal, that any business in any country outside the EU should be beholden to any policy passed by the EU. EU law should have ZERO legitimacy outside of the EU. Otherwise, what's to stop any country/countries from setting international law all on their own. Crazy.
Companies can feel free not to do business with EU citizens and processors.

IMO, if EU citizens want to use services operated or hosted outside the EU that collect data, they do so at their own risk and without the protections or guarantees of GDPR. Simple as that.
That may be your opinion, but it's not the law.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JRobinsonJr Avatar
51 months ago
While it's easy and reasonable to disagree on the details, the idea of a core, globally applicable set of individual privacy standards would make the underlying security processes far easier... and thus more effective. Too often companies have to implement different sets of controls for each region, making such development more difficult and prone to error.

Now... who should set that standard? Good question. It's going to have to come from a combination of industry leadership - both technology and consumer - and governments. Many people will balk at government involvement - and I don't generally disagree with the premise - but the reality is that without such participation there will be no mandate or enforcement.

GDPR is actually a great start and could, IMO, be leveraged. After all, most companies are already taking requisite measures... so there is little to no additional cost with significant benefit to the rest of the world.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vipergts2207 Avatar
51 months ago
I'm all for data privacy. However, to me, when it comes to GDPR, it seems ludicrous, and quite illegal, that any business in any country outside the EU should be beholden to any policy passed by the EU. EU law should have ZERO legitimacy outside of the EU. Otherwise, what's to stop any country/countries from setting international law all on their own. Crazy.

IMO, if EU citizens want to use services operated or hosted outside the EU that collect data, they do so at their own risk and without the protections or guarantees of GDPR. Simple as that.
If you want to do business in a country then you follow their rules. Doesn't matter if it's a foreign-based company or not. The alternative choice is to not do business in that country, and obviously these companies have chosen not to do that because quite frankly that would be a financially stupid decision. Conversely, foreign-based companies operating in the U.S. also have to follow U.S. law. This isn't a new concept so I'm not sure why you're acting as such.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro Renders Highlight Multiple Design Changes

Wednesday May 25, 2022 8:56 am PDT by
Leaker Jon Prosser today shared ostensibly accurate renders of the iPhone 14 Pro, providing the most accurate look yet at what the device could look like when it launches later this year. In the latest video on YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Prosser revealed renders of the iPhone 14 Pro made by Apple concept graphic designer Ian Zelbo, highlighting a range of specific design changes...
iPad Pro USB C Feature Coral

Deals: Apple's iPad Pro Reaches Up to $449 Off in Amazon's Latest Sales

Wednesday May 25, 2022 10:09 am PDT by
Amazon is marking down a wide variety of 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models this week, with prices starting as low as $749.00 for the 11-inch tablet. You'll find the full list of sales below, all of which can be found on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep...
apple account card

Wallet App Now Supports Apple Account Cards on iOS 15.5

Wednesday May 25, 2022 5:01 pm PDT by
Apple appears to have recently updated the Wallet app to allow users to add an Apple Account Card, which displays the Apple credit balance associated with an Apple ID. If you receive an App Store or Apple Store gift card, for example, it is added to an Apple Account that was previously visible in the App Store and Apple Store apps. As of today, the Apple Account balance can also be added to...
iphone 13 pro max display bleen

iPhone 14 Max Reportedly Weeks Behind Schedule [Updated]

Thursday May 26, 2022 7:25 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 Max is currently behind schedule by around three weeks, according to Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu. Yesterday, Nikkei Asia reported that at least one iPhone 14 model was three weeks behind schedule due to the impact of lockdowns on Apple's supply chains in China, but it was not clear which iPhone 14 model this related to. Now, Pu has clarified that the model...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 14 Pro Screen Refresh Rate Upgrade Could Allow for Always-On Display

Tuesday May 24, 2022 7:23 am PDT by
Last year's iPhone 13 Pro models were the first of Apple's smartphones to come with 120Hz ProMotion displays, and while the two iPhone 14 Pro models will continue to feature the technology, their screens could well boast expanded refresh rate variability this time round. To bring ProMotion displays to the ‌iPhone 13 Pro models‌, Apple adopted LTPO panel technology with variable refresh...
Apple Tap to Pay iPhone

Apple Stores Rolling Out iPhone-to-iPhone Contactless Payments Starting Today

Wednesday May 25, 2022 6:54 am PDT by
Apple in February unveiled a new "Tap to Pay on iPhone" feature that will allow compatible iPhones to accept payments via Apple Pay, contactless credit and debit cards, and other digital wallets, with no additional hardware required. Apple began testing the feature at its Apple Park Visitor Center earlier this month, and now Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has tweeted that the feature will begin...
apple tv 4k design green

Apple Releases tvOS 15.5.1 for Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K

Wednesday May 25, 2022 9:42 am PDT by
Apple today released tvOS 15.5.1, a minor update to the tvOS operating system that first launched in September 2021. tvOS 15.5.1 comes about 10 days after the launch of tvOS 15.5. tvOS 15.5.1 can be downloaded over the air on the Apple TV through the Settings app by going to System > Software Update. ‌‌‌‌‌‌Apple TV‌‌‌‌‌‌ owners who have automatic software updates...