Privacy is an important value for people throughout our country. Californians are particularly adamant in holding up privacy as an important right, even voting in 1972 to include the right to privacy as an inalienable right.

However, the right to privacy – including the right to have control over who receives one’s personal information – becomes a much more complicated issue in the internet age. With Facebook, Google and other internet sites obtaining more and more of our personal information, what are our rights as consumers and how do we enforce them?

Californias New Privacy Laws

Earlier this year, California passed a new law to protect the rights of consumers throughout the state. According to the New York Times:

“The new law grants consumers the right to know what information companies are collecting about them, why they are collecting that data and with whom they are sharing it. It gives consumers the right to tell companies to delete their information as well as to not sell or share their data.”

In addition, the new law protects consumers from negative backlash for exercising these rights, guaranteeing consumers the same quality of service.

What This Means For You

Although it is very encouraging news that the California legislature is working to protect the rights of its consumers, questions remain. How will these new laws be enforced? What is the small print that can allow the major companies and social media networks to avoid accountability?

The most important thing you can do is to be careful about sharing your information. Further, if you have had your information used against your wishes or have had your privacy rights violated in any way, this is your chance to fight back. Talk with an experienced lawyer and fight for the compensation you deserve.