Which States Have Consumer Data Privacy Laws?

The race is on to enact consumer data privacy laws across state lines, which, in the absence of a comprehensive federal law, would provide American consumers with more choice over how companies acquire and utilize their personal data.

Currently, there are 18 states – including California, Virginia, and Colorado, among others – that have comprehensive data privacy laws in place. Such laws generally apply across industries, with exceptions for certain data categories and entity types, and grant rights to individuals pertaining to the collection, use, and disclosure of their personal data by businesses.

Concurrently, several states have introduced narrow consumer privacy bills that address a range of issues, including protecting biometric identifiers and health data or governing the activities of specific entities like data brokers or internet service providers.

However, this patchwork approach to privacy legislation could pose compliance and liability risks for companies that have multistate operations.

Proposed bills in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and other states would grant rights similar to those found in existing privacy legislation but differ in implementation and enforcement. The consumer data privacy map below shows the status of narrow and comprehensive legislation to stay abreast of changing regulatory landscapes.

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