Although the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) went into effect on January 1, 2020, the California Attorney General (“AG”) was prohibited from bringing enforcement actions until July 1, 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some observers were unsure whether the AG would be able to meet the July 1st deadline. However, the AG is moving full speed ahead and has even denied businesses’ requests to delay the CCPA enforcement date due to COVID-19. Now, the AG has commenced enforcement action as planned, and businesses have already started to receive CCPA violation notices.
What should you do if you receive a CCPA violation notice?
CCPA Enforcement Procedure
The CCPA affords the AG broad powers to enforce the law’s privacy protections. Under §1798.155 of the CCPA, the AG must give a business thirty (30) days to cure any alleged violation before it can commence an enforcement action. In practice, this means that the AG must first advise the subject business, in writing, that it is allegedly violating the CCPA. The AG may only take further action if the business fails to cure the violation within 30 days. As of July 1, 2020, the AG began to send out the first of these violation notices to businesses. The notices are confidential, but some businesses may choose to respond publicly, which could provide more insight into the AG’s process. Depending on whether businesses comply with the AG’s violation notices, the AG may either commence a confidential investigation or bring a lawsuit.
|Your education on compliance with Internet, telemarketing, and trademark law should begin with a discussion between you and an experienced attorney. |
Scheduling a free consultation with Klein Moynihan Turco is a great place to start.
A Wakeup Call for Business
As we have repeatedly advised, businesses must take their CCPA compliance obligations seriously. Now that the AG has begun enforcing the CCPA, businesses are out of time to get their respective houses in order. Of course, businesses should have been striving for CCPA compliance well before the July 1, 2020 deadline. In the coming weeks, civil lawsuits may be filed against a few of those non-cooperative companies, which will shed some light on the types of businesses and/or conduct that are currently in the AG’s crosshairs. Because the AG’s CCPA enforcement powers are less than thirty (30) days old, no fines or penalties have yet been imposed upon businesses for failure to comply. For such transgressors, as we have previously blogged, businesses can face steep regulatory fines. Civil penalties can range from $2,500 for a non-intentional CCPA violation to $7,500 for an intentional violation.
We anticipate more rigorous enforcement as the AG’s office returns to full capacity following the COVID-19 pandemic. Accordingly, it is essential that businesses thoroughly implement and maintain their CCPA compliance practices.
As always, it is recommended that businesses work with experienced counsel to ensure compliance in order to avoid costly CCPA investigations or, worse still, lawsuits and fines. If you need assistance with CCPA compliance, please e-mail us at email@example.com, or call us at (212) 246-0900.
The material contained herein is provided for informational purposes only and is not legal advice, nor is it a substitute for obtaining legal advice from an attorney. Each situation is unique, and you should not act or rely on any information contained herein without seeking the advice of an experienced attorney.
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
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