How big a change is this?

online data privacy california

Depends on your perspective. On one hand, California’s privacy law is the strongest in the United States, giving consumers a new level of control that may become the national standard. Companies are spending an estimated $55 billion to comply, largely on updates to their policies and systems. 

On the other hand, the law doesn’t stop companies from collecting personal data — it just gives people more ways to know what’s being collected and ask that their information be deleted. In other words: the impact of the law may rest in how many people exercise their new rights.

The biggest change most Californians likely will see is a flurry of notices that companies have updated their privacy policies. If you click through these emails and read the privacy policies, you may notice a California-specific section, such as this one from Kohl’s. You’ll also see directions on how to request the data the company has about you and how to ask that it be deleted.