America needs a privacy law

Source: Marc Rotenberg, Electronic Privacy Information Center (N.Y.Times) (Paid Registration)

In the 1970's, Congress well understood the need to limit the collection of personal data. And Congress did not view privacy protection and the free flow of information as a trade-off. In the same year that Congress enacted the Privacy Act, it also strengthened the Freedom of Information Act.

There is still much that Congress can do to strengthen privacy protections for Americans. Enacting federal baseline legislation and establishing a data protection agency would be a good start.

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