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Global Privacy Enforcement Authorities Launch Cooperative Network and Website

The United States Federal Trade Commission ("FTC") recently joined forces with privacy authorities from eleven other countries to launch the Global Privacy Enforcement Network ("GPEN"), which aims to promote cross-border information sharing and enforcement of privacy laws. On September 21, 2010, GPEN unveiled its new website, https://www.privacyenforcement.net/, designed to educate the public about the network. The GPEN website, which is supported by the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development ("OECD"), provides guidelines and application instructions for government agencies interested in participating in GPEN. It also sets forth GPEN’s action plan and mission of “sharing information about privacy enforcement issues, trends and experiences; participating in relevant training; cooperating on outreach activities; engaging in dialogue with relevant private sector organizations on privacy enforcement and outreach issues; and facilitating effective cross-border privacy enforcement in specific matters by creating a contact list of privacy enforcement authorities interested in bilateral cooperation in cross-border investigations and enforcement matters.”

In his remarks about the network, which was officially launched in March, FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz stated that “to protect consumers’ privacy in today’s global economy, all of us who work in law enforcement around the world need to cooperate with each other. We at the FTC are looking forward to working closely with our colleagues overseas to make this happen.”

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