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Politics & Government

Internet privacy bills signed into law

Delaware Public Media

Gov. Jack Markell (D) signed a set of four bills Friday that broaden online privacy protections for children and adults throughout the state.

Drafted by Attorney General Matt Denn's (D) office, Markell says he agrees with Denn that rapidly developing technology can be helpful, but it needs to be watched for aspects that can harm society. 

"They’re changing so many people’s lives for the better in terms of the tools that they represent, but there are lots of considerations that we have to take into account about what the unintended consequences may be," Markell said.

One of the more controversial measures prohibits marketing alcohol, tobacco, guns and other adult products and services on websites intended for kids.

The National Rifle Association opposed it during June deliberations, saying it would ban ads for youth sport shooting clubs and events.

Representatives from Denn's office testified at length against that assertion, with it eventually passing.

Denn says will help give parents more peace of mind when their kids use the internet.

“Parents in particular are going to have a lot more confidence that both at home and in school that their kids have some safety procedures in place in terms of their personal data not being disclosed to people who shouldn’t get it, in terms of not having things or services marketed to them," he said.

Other legislation signed by Markell protect residents from employers forcing them to give access to their social media accounts and making it illegal to post online information of victims of stalking or domestic violence.

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