Microsoft boss bashes Congress for "failure" in digital privacy laws

Washington DC - The International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) 2022 is one of the year's biggest gathering of business heads and tech experts on privacy – and Microsoft's chief used it to flame Congress.

Microsoft's CEO just called out Congress for lagging behind with digital privacy laws.
Microsoft's CEO just called out Congress for lagging behind with digital privacy laws.  © REUTERS

Brad Smith called out lacking US digital privacy legislation, upping the ante after Apple CEO Tim Cook criticized plans to open up the Apple devices to third-party app stores.

Speaking Wednesday at IAPP 2022, Smith said that laws regulating how users are protected on the internet are "not just needed, but long overdue."

"Let's look at what's happened around the world while our Congress has been frozen in time."

He used his time on the mic to take direct aim at the country's piecemeal approach to digital privacy laws.

"The United States increasingly stands alone. The fact of the matter in my view is there is a critical element we are failing to think about. The failure of the US to legislate doesn't stop global regulation. It doesn't even slow it down. It just makes our country less influential in the world."

He also made remarks about a unified agency that is all about understanding the digital space, its privacy issues and solutions, as well as making and enforcing federal digital privacy rules.

"The Europeans, the British, the Australians, the Japanese, the Koreans, they’re all moving forward," Smith later told CNBC. "We’re going to be better served as a country if the United States plays an active role as well."

Cover photo: REUTERS

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