Google announced today that they are joining the Consumer Privacy Legislation Forum.  This group, consisting of other companies such as eBay, Microsoft and Sun Microsystems is "calling for federal consumer protection legislation."  The Forum believes that there should be a uniformed consumer privacy legislation that will protect consumers from improper use of their personal information.  The are arguing that a uniformed law would make it easier to handle cases of abuse regardless of the state in which the crime occurred.

With the rise in concern about identity theft, it is important for companies to focus more on safeguarding individuals' personal information.  Many people are still afraid to conduct business online because of the fear that their information will fall into the wrong hands.

 In April 2001, The Federal Trade Commission, as well as other federal agencies with consumer protection jurisdiction, joined 12 other countries to form econsumer.gov.  Their mission is to:

Enhance consumer protection and consumer confidence in e-commerce.  Using the existing Consumer Sentinel database (a database of consumer complaint data and other investigative information operated by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission), the incoming complaints will be shared through the government Web site with participating consumer protection law enforcers.

Although the countries do not pursue individual complaints, if a number of people complain about a particular issue/company, law enforcement agencies can spot this trend and choose to take action.

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