Leahy Urges Google, Apple to Attend Mobile Privacy Hearing

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Pat Leahy (D-VT) “is urging two leading providers of smartphone and tablet technology to accept invitations to testify before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law at a May 10 hearing focused on ‘Protecting Mobile Privacy: Your Smartphones, Tablets, Cell Phones and Your Privacy,’” according to a press release.

In letters to Google CEO Larry Page and Apple CEO Steve Jobs, Leahy urged the companies to testify about how each is addressing privacy concerns raised by the collection and storage of sensitive, personal information by technologies like Google’s Android software and Apple’s iPhone.

“Like many Americans, I read with deep concern recent press reports indicating that [Android Phones and iPhones] collect, store and track user location data without the user’s consent,” wrote Leahy.  “As Congress considers updates to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and other Federal privacy laws, it is essential that the Senate Judiciary Committee have full and accurate information about the privacy risks posed by this new technology.”

Read the Google letter here and the Apple letter here.

Update: According to All Things Digital, Apple CEO Steve Jobs will send a representative to attend the hearing.

He said Apple looks forward to testifying before Congress and other regulatory bodies and said the company will do what it can to clarify things further.

“I think Apple will be testifying,” Jobs said. “They have asked us to come and we will honor their request, of course.”

Update (4/28): According to a press release statement by Chairman Leahy, both Apple and Google representatives will attend the hearing.

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Filed under Hearings, Letters

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