Determining the enforcement priorities of the Administration and the 115th Congress—if any—still remains a difficult task. The prior Administration clearly was focused on consumer privacy protection, but there are significant indicia—including the purported gathering and use of big data by the Trump campaign to deliver targeted political advertisements; new actions by Customs and Border Patrol to examine the social media history of people entering the U.S., including U.S. citizens; and the alleged gutting of Internet privacy protection, to name a few—that the current Administration may not have the same focus.

Some of these actions suggest a large step toward a more business-friendly environment regarding the handling of consumer data, such as the recent bill signed in to law that blocks the implementation of rules that would have required Internet service providers to obtain a customer’s permission before selling customer Web-browsing data. Despite this perceived environment of a more laissez faire attitude toward consumer data privacy, corporate counsels of business that handle individuals’ personal information should not relax just yet. In response to the perceived federal shortcomings, it is likely that significant data privacy enforcement will still occur, through action at the state level.