Apple CEO to Congress: It's time to step in, protect our privacy

Apple CEO Tim Cook called on Congress to pass comprehensive federal privacy legislation, which he described as a "landmark package of reforms that protect and empower the consumer," in a recent op-ed for Time.

As part of the legislation, Mr. Cook advocated regulating "data brokers," or companies that collect and sell user data. In particular, he suggested the FTC require all data brokers to register to a clearinghouse, where consumers can track and delete their data transactions.

"Meaningful, comprehensive federal privacy legislation should not only aim to put consumers in control of their data, it should also shine a light on actors trafficking in your data behind the scenes," Mr. Cook wrote.

Mr. Cook also outlined four principles to guide Congress in creating comprehensive privacy legislation:

1. Companies should minimize the personal data they collect on users, such as stripping customer data of identifying information

2. Companies should provide customers with information on what data is being collected about them and why they are collecting it

3. Companies should make it easy for customers to access, correct and delete personal data that they have collected

4. Companies should establish high-quality security practices to protect customer data

"In 2019, it's time to stand up for the right to privacy — yours, mine, all of ours," Mr. Cook wrote. "Consumers shouldn't have to tolerate another year of companies irresponsibly amassing huge user profiles, data breaches that seem out of control and the vanishing ability to control our own digital lives."

To read Mr. Cook's op-ed in Time, click here.

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