FTC to Host Comprehensive Collection of Web Data Workshop

Washington, DC - The Federal Trade Commission will host a workshop tomorrow exploring the practices and privacy implications of comprehensive data collection. FTC Commissioner Julie Brill will deliver the opening remarks, and Commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen will provide remarks after lunch. Consumer protection organizations, academics, business and industry representatives, privacy professionals, and others will join FTC staff to examine the technological landscape, benefits and risks, consumer knowledge and attitude, and the future of comprehensive data collection.

Webcast
The workshop will be webcast live.

Submit questions online
FTC staff will live-tweet the day-long event using the hashtag #FTCpriv from the agency’s @FTC account. To submit questions for panelists online, tweet them with the hashtag, post them to the FTC’s Facebook page, or email them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Registration Details
The workshop will be held at the FTC's satellite building conference center, 601 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C.

Advance registration is not required. On-site registration will begin at 8:30 am ET. Please arrive at the FTC 30 minutes before the event, and bring a valid government issued photo ID. The security processing will include a metal detector and X-ray screening of all hand carried items.

Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Requests should be submitted via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling Samantha Konstandt at 202-326-3348. Requests should be made in advance. Please include a detailed description of the accommodation needed, and provide contact information.

Agenda 

9:00-9:15am ET 

Opening Remarks
FTC Commissioner Julie Brill

9:15-10:00am  

The Technological Landscape of Comprehensive Data Collection
In this presentation, Professor Dan Wallach, Rice University, will explain the current technological means through which consumers’ online activities can be collected and the limits to that technology. He will explore which types of entities have the ability to collect data about consumers’ online activities in order to create comprehensive profiles.  He will also describe current and possible future uses for such profiles.

10:00-10:15am

Break 

10:15am-12:00pm   

Benefits and Risks of Comprehensive Data Collection
This panel will explore both the benefits to consumers from the technologies that allow comprehensive data collection as well as the various privacy concerns associated with the ability to track all, or virtually all, of a consumer’s online activities. The panel will discuss the products and services these technologies create or enable; the types of information that can be collected and how that information is used; and the associated benefits and privacy risks.

 

Panelists

  • Mike Altschul, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, CTIA
  • Howard Beales, Professor, George Washington University
  • Markham C. Erickson, General Counsel, The Internet Association
  • Neil Richards, Professor, Washington University in St. Louis School of Law
  • Ashkan Soltani, Independant Researcher and Consultant
  • Lee Tien, Senior Staff Attorney, Electronic Frontier Foundation

12:00-1:30pm

Lunch

1:30-1:45pm   

Remarks
FTC Commissioner Maureen K. Ohlhausen

1:45-3:00pm  

Consumer Attitudes About and Choice with Respect to Comprehensive Data Collection
This panel will examine consumer attitudes and knowledge about comprehensive data collection and the role of consumer choice and transparency. Panelists will discuss what consumers know about the comprehensive data collection that can or does occur; what consumer should be told about such collection; what choices consumers should have about such collection; and whether there are competitive alternatives in order to make choices meaningful.

 

Panelists

  • Alessandro Acquisti, Professor, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Christopher Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, American Civil Liberties Union
  • Lorrie Faith Cranor, Professor, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Michael Hintze, Associate General Counsel, Microsoft
  • Stuart Ingis, Counsel, Digital Advertising Alliance

3:00-3:15pm

Break

3:15-4:45pm

The Future of Comprehensive Data Collection
This panel will focus on potential next steps for industry and policy makers in the area of comprehensive data collection. In particular, panelists will discuss what standards should apply to comprehensive data collection and whether the market can provide alternatives for consumers who wish to avoid such collection.

    

Panelists

  • Lisa Campbell, Deputy Commissioner, Fair Business Practices Branch, Competition Bureau, Canada
  • Alissa Cooper, Chief Computer Scientist, Center for Democracy and Technology
  • Jim Halpert, DLA Piper, General Counsel to Internet Commerce Coalition
  • Chris Jay Hoofnagle, Director, Information Privacy Programs, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology, Berkeley School of Law
  • Thomas Lenard,  President and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute
  • Randal C. Picker, Professor, University of Chicago School of Law
  • Sid Stamm, Lead Privacy Engineer, Mozilla

Additional information