Yahoo Lobbies to Weaken EU Privacy Legislation/Document reveals industry scheme to preserve tracking, profiling, targeting of online users

CDD has obtained a Yahoo! (link is external)lobbying document being given to EU policymakers. Yahoo! is working to undermine pending legislative proposals that would significantly strengthen the rights EU citizens have regarding the collection and use of their information. Entiled “Yahoo! Rationale for Amendments to Draft Data Protection Regulation as Relate to Pseudonymous Data,” the document attempts to persaude EU policymakers that the kind of information on users the company (and most others (link is external)) collect to fuel their extensive data profiling and targeting services should—guess—be exempt from the proposed new privacy safeguards. Yahoo! (link is external)is one of the US companies lobbying hard to weaken the EU proposal, which would set a new global standard for Internet privacy protection. Yahoo! (link is external) and others are trying to argue that the vast amounts of data (link is external)used to create targeting profiles on individuals—but which does not contain our name, address or other information that identified us in the pre-Internet era—should be exempt from the proposed safeguards on explicit consent and profiling, for example.

Yahoo! (link is external) and other US companies should not be undermining the principled and civil liberties based privacy proposals of the EU. Short-term profits placed before building democratic safeguards for the 21st Century is a shamefully misplaced business model—especially from companies like Google, Facebook, etc. which try and cloak what they do as digital beacons of freedom.