The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) requires the California Attorney General’s Office (AGO) to promulgate regulations related to the CCPA. In October 2019, the AGO published its proposed CCPA regulations and invited the public to comment on the same. The AGO held a series of public hearings to assist in collecting comments. The public comment period ended on December 6, 2019. We are now awaiting the AGO’s next moves, which could include publishing revisions, adopting the regulations as proposed, etc.

Below, we provide a high-level overview of some key issues that were raised at the recent public hearing on the proposed regulations held in San Francisco on December 4. More than 100 people attended the hearing and 30 or so offered comments.

  • As they did during the earlier round of public hearings, AGO staff received public comments without directly responding or providing additional information.
  • Industry advocates and consumer activists alike highlighted the need for greater clarity with regard to the specific responsibilities, definitions and characterizations of “businesses,” “service providers,” “third parties” and entities that may qualify as not-third parties with regard to potential “sales” of personal information.
  • Some industry advocates asked the AGO to release sample templates for the “Do Not Sell” button, for consumer request response letters and for various other notices and disclosures required by the CCPA. Speakers noted that other regulators have provided similar templates in the past and that doing so could cut down greatly on confusion and potential costs to businesses.
  • There was extensive discussion of the potential effect of the CCPA and the proposed regulations on businesses’ ability to use advertisement and marketing services. Some speakers requested that the AGO recognize current advertisement-blocking technology as an acceptable means by which consumers may communicate advertising preferences to businesses.
  • Some industry advocates sought a further extension in AGO enforcement to give businesses, particularly smaller businesses, more time to comply with the CCPA and the final CCPA regulations.

In addition to the above, the AGO has already published on its website the written comments it received during the comment period. These include comments from individuals, companies and trade groups and provide further insight into ongoing operational issues with CCPA compliance across industries.

We will continue to closely monitor the AGO’s rulemaking process. Businesses should anticipate that their privacy policies and other materials may need to be updated once the AGO’s final regulations are released. Given that AGO enforcement will begin July 1, 2020, businesses should try and implement any necessary changes as soon as practical after release of the final regulations.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.