Building on the strengths of the California Consumer Privacy Act, state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, joined California Attorney General Xavier Becerra on Monday to introduce legislation that will further protect consumers by ensuring enforcement of the bill’s privacy provisions.

“Our constitutional right to privacy continues to face unprecedented assault. Our locations, relationships and interests are being tracked without our knowledge, bought and sold by corporate interests for their own economic gain and conducted in order to manipulate us,” Jackson said. “With the passage of the California Consumer Privacy Act last year, California took an important first step in protecting our fundamental right to privacy. SB 561 will ensure that the most significant privacy protections in the nation are effectively and robustly enforced.”

Following a series of reports that millions of Americans have had their personal information collected, sold or compromised without their knowledge, permission or consent, California passed the most significant privacy protections in the nation last year with the California Consumer Privacy Act. However, as the agency charged with oversight and enforcement of the law, the Attorney General’s Office identified a number of impediments to implementation. Senate Bill 561 seeks to address these challenges and provide the Attorney General’s Office with the tools they requested to ensure effective enforcement the California Consumer Privacy Act’s important privacy protections.

Senate Bill 561 makes the following changes:

» Removes an onerous requirement to provide legal opinions directly to any business or third party, which would unnecessarily divert public funds and resources from enforcement.

» Removes the attorney general’s requirement to provide 30-day notice before taking action, essentially a “get out of jail free card” for bad actors.

» Allows Californians whose rights have been violated under the CCPA to seek justice.

“California, the nation’s hub for innovation, has long led the way to protect consumers in the digital age. And as we work to strengthen data privacy law, the world is watching. It’s essential that we get this right,” Becerra said. “We thank Senator Jackson for her commitment to data privacy and for introducing SB 561, a critical measure to strengthen and clarify the CCPA. We will continue to work together to protect all Californians and their constitutional right to privacy.”

Jackson represents the 19th Senate District, which includes all of Santa Barbara County and western Ventura County.

— Marly Young represents state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson.