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Gov. Carney signs Delaware Personal Data Privacy Act, effective 2025

Governor John Carney signs the Delaware Personal Data Privacy Act.
Quinn Kirkpatrick
Delaware Public Media
Governor John Carney signs the Delaware Personal Data Privacy Act.

Governor John Carney signs the Delaware Personal Data Privacy Act, the strongest data privacy bill in the nation.

Bill sponsor State Rep. Krista Griffith says these are rights Delawareans have never had before.

“Delawareans haven’t had the right to even access who has their information, how much information they have on you individually, and also, if there is something wrong with that information, to correct it," Griffith says. "But most importantly, to even delete the information.”

The bill goes into effect January 1, 2025, and the Director of the Department of Justice’s Fraud and Consumer Protection Division Owen Lefkon says the DOJ will begin a public outreach period no later than July 1, 2024, to inform consumers of their rights and businesses of their obligation.

“Sometimes people want to give their data," Lefkon says. "You can get benefits, you can get a discount. One of the key things about this bill is it gives consumers choice. It puts the control back in the hands of the consumer.”

Lefkon says Delaware is also the first state to raise restrictions on selling children’s data from 16 years old to 18.

The law applies to entities conducting business in Delaware that controlled or processed the personal data of 35,000 consumers or more, or 10,000 consumers if they derive more than 20 percent of their gross revenue from the sale of personal data.

Delaware DOJ’s Director of the Consumer Protection Unit Marion Quirk says consumers don’t always know what information they’re offering up in a business transaction, and the potential effects.

“People can know about your health information for example," Quirk says. "I think that’s one of the real concerning things if that type of information is sold and used that could have a negative impact on you getting a job, otherwise caring for your family, insurance related issues, so that’s one of the things that we are very concerned about.”

Quirk says the DOJ will hire two more lawyers, a paralegal, and a technologist to educate consumers and businesses about their rights and responsibilities and to enforce the legislation.

Rachel Sawicki was born and raised in Camden, Delaware and attended the Caesar Rodney School District. They graduated from the University of Delaware in 2021 with a double degree in Communications and English and as a leader in the Student Television Network, WVUD and The Review.