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CPPA Board Approves Proposal to Require Browsers to Provide Opt-Out Signals

The California Privacy Protection Agency voted 5-0 to support a legislative proposal to require browsers to send an opt-out preference signal. 

While the proposal still needs to go through the standard hurdles in the California legislature and signed by the Governor, if passed it would be another example of California leading the way in privacy by essentially providing a one-stop shop for California consumers to exercise their rights through browser signals instead of individually. This is an extension of the requirement in the California Privacy Rights Act for websites to comply with browser signals in order to opt-out of the sale/sharing of personal information, if and when sent - now the browsers will have to actually have the capability to send the signals, completing the technology set necessary to exercise opt-out rights. 

What will be interesting (assuming it ultimately gets passed) is to see when this will be effective and how the browser providers implement the requirement - will they provide this functionality to everyone, or try to limit it only to California? Time will tell. 

The California Privacy Protection Agency Board voted 5-0 at its December 8, 2023 meeting to advance a legislative proposal to require browser vendors to include a feature that allows users to exercise their California privacy rights through opt-out preference signals. Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Apple Safari—which make up over 90% of the desktop browser market share—have declined to offer these signals, although these companies are also heavily reliant on advertising business models. No device operating system has yet implemented support for opt-out preference signals. If the proposal is adopted, California would be the first state to require browser vendors to offer consumers the option to enable these signals. Seven states, including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Montana, Oregon, and Texas, require businesses to honor browser privacy signals as an opt out of the sale of personal data.


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