Montana has become the latest state to approve legislation aimed at strengthening data privacy
protections, joining eight other states that have passed data privacy laws, even as such a measure continues to elude progress at the federal level, according to The Record
, a news site by cybersecurity firm Recorded Future.
Data privacy advocates, including Consumer Reports Policy Analyst Matt Schwartz, have praised Montana's data privacy law, which will take effect in October 2024, for having a universal opt-out provision, which is a first among Republican-controlled legislatures.
Shady tactics in obtaining consent to user data, including ads masquerading as independent content, hidden terms or junk fees, and data sharing lures have also been prohibited under the state's law. However, other states have been noted to be crafting data privacy laws that are more business-friendly than consumer-focused.
"All that to say, there is no end in sight to the rapidly growing list of states attempting to close the federal privacy gap. We're still a long way from a simplified privacy in the United States, despite the parallels in proposed bills to existing and prospective laws tending to the uniform side," said privacy law expert Dan Clarke.