The Washington Privacy Act passed today by the Senate would provide state residents the tools to protect the vast personal information that makes up their digital footprints from being monitored, monetized or used without their permission.

“Ultimately, the goal of this historic legislation is to make it as easy to get your data out of the black hole of the Internet as it is to get in,” said Sen. Reuven Carlyle (D-Seattle), the bill’s sponsor. “The Washington Privacy Act takes the best practices from leading evidence-based policies worldwide and creates explicit new rights.”

Senate Bill 5062 , which passed 48-1, would give consumers the right to clearly and easily:

  • see what information a company has about them and with whom it has been shared;
  • correct their data to ensure accuracy;
  • delete data they no longer want a company to possess;
  • move their data to other providers; and
  • opt out of the use of their data for targeted advertising, additional profiling, or sale.

“Data that is most vulnerable to abuse is clearly and directly protected in this bill,” Carlyle said. “There are unambiguous protections for the use of sensitive identifying data such as racial and ethnic origins, religious beliefs, health conditions, sexual identification, citizenship and immigration status, and genetic and biometric data, including personal data of known children and geolocation data.

“Numerous other states, including Virginia, are moving forward with strong privacy legislation and it’s my honor to actively contribute to that national dialogue.”

Versions of this bill have passed the state Senate two years in a row with virtually unanimous 46-1 votes.

“This bill delivers clear, accessible and enforceable privacy protections,” Carlyle said. “As the home of innovation, with many of the premier companies in the world—and fierce constitutional privacy rights—Washington is positioned as the ideal state to pass the bold consumer privacy legislation we need for the 21st century.”

Carlyle’s floor comments on the bill can be viewed here.