July 27, 2020
Welcome to Privacy Points! This is the first edition of the Office of Privacy and Data Protection’s newsletter.
Each month, I will be providing you with information and updates on data privacy issues in Washington state.
Our office has been busy since my start as Washington’s Chief Privacy Officer on January 1, 2020. We immediately launched into a legislative session where several privacy-related bills were considered in the Legislature.
While the Washington Privacy Act did not become law this year, the facial recognition bill did pass with a partial veto (ESSB 6280). In addition, lawmakers brought forward several proposals tackling a range of privacy issues in consumer technology, biometrics and artificial intelligence. I anticipate more privacy-related measures will come before the Legislature for consideration next session.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted our office’s ability to speak at events and interact with others on privacy issues in person, we have pushed forward on the virtual front with several webinars for local governments and state agencies, including:
- Washington’s Data Breach Notification Law for State and Local Government (April 30, 2020)
- Washington’s Approach to Regulating Facial Recognition (May 28, 2020)
- Contact Tracing in Washington State (June 30, 2020)
I am eager to help be a voice and subject matter expert for privacy in the state of Washington.
In addition to the webinars, we have been holding quarterly meetings with the State Agency Privacy Forum (formerly known as the Privacy Working Group), an organization of state agency privacy professionals.
We have also created a State and Local Government Breach Assessment Form, and several informative articles including Tips for Safely Using Public Wi-Fi and Video Conferencing Best Practices.
I was also a guest on KUOW’s podcast The Record with Bill Radke where we discussed privacy issues and tips for staying safe online during the pandemic.
Upcoming work includes:
- Participating in a state Senate Environment, Energy & Technology Committee work session on July 28. (TVW video of work session)
- Participating as a member of the state’s oversight committee on Washington’s development of a COVID-19 exposure notification phone app.
I hope your summer is going as well as it can be in these unique times. I look forward to sharing updates and news from our office soon.
State Chief Privacy Officer