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Term: Data Broker

Data Brokers collect personal data of individuals from different places and sells it to third parties, often without having a prior direct relationship with them.

What Are Data Brokers?

An Individual/a company that collects personal data of people from different places and sells it to other people or organizations. They might get information from public sources like social media, online shopping, or even private databases. This information can be used to learn more about people and to try to sell them things, but it’s important to make sure that personal information is used in a way that is fair and respectful of people’s privacy.

Data Brokers In California

Under Senate Bill 362, data brokers must provide consumers the ability to request that their personal data will be deleted from the broker’s databases.

Under the California Data Broker Law, a “data broker” is a CCPA/CPRA-covered business that sells the personal information of a consumer with whom the business doesn’t have a direct relationship.

CCPA/CPRA-covered businesses are: For-profit entity doing business in California that collects California consumers’ personal data, and: Had gross revenues exceeding $25 million as of January 1 in the preceding calendar year.

Furthermore, data brokers that meets California’s definition of a “data broker,” must to register with the California Data Broker Registry, pay an annual fee and provide information about their practices. Consumers can visit the registry and see the list of registered data brokers.

The Risks of Data Brokers

  • Privacy Concerns: The vast majority of individuals are unaware of the extent to which their data is being collected, aggregated, and sold, leading to significant privacy concerns.
  • Data Accuracy: Mistakes in data can have severe consequences, particularly if used for decisions like job offers or loans.
  • Lack of sufficient legal basis: It is hard to verify whether or not there is a sufficient legal basis to process the personal data bought from data brokers.
  • Regulatory Issues: As awareness grows, there’s increasing legislative scrutiny, with calls for more stringent regulation of data broker activities.
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