The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced plans for a workshop event aimed at protecting consumer data privacy.
The commission said that the event, scheduled for 6 December, would bring officials together with privacy advocates, security experts and executives from internet service providers for a summit event on consumer privacy.
The FTC said that the event would be free and open to the public and would primarily be focused on examining data collection and possible privacy concerns stemming from the collection of user data and activity logs online.
Specifically, the FTC said that it would be examining how ISPs collect information on user activity and how that information is being used by firms for marketing and data analysis.
Additionally, the workshop will examine what protections for user privacy and currently in place as well as possible safeguards and alternatives to products and services which collect user data.
"ISPs serve as a gateway to the internet for their customers and have access to large amounts of unencrypted data that their customers send and receive," the FTC said.
"Browsers, operating systems, and social media also may be in the position to develop highly detailed and comprehensive profiles of their customers – and to do so in a manner that may be completely invisible to consumers."
The FTC has in recent months stepped up its efforts both in the US and internationally to protect consumer privacy and punish firms who collect excessive amounts of data on customers' online activity.
The privacy crackdowns, however, have had some unintended consequences. A recent report suggested that user privacy protections and efforts have made the pursuit of hackers and cyber criminals more difficult for law enforcement groups.
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