Gadgets and other tech devices have been with us for a long time. They provide various conveniences and undeniable benefits. However, they also serve as tools for bad actors. Your mobile phone, for example, can be a way for hackers to steal your personal information. Smart and IoT devices can be used to spy on you.
Governments are aware of these threats. That’s why there have been a number of laws and regulations introduced to address cyber threats through tech products. You are likely oblivious to the protection you are getting from these laws and regulations.
Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA)
Passed by the US legislation in 1986, this law prohibits access to computers or networks without the authorization of the owner. This also sets standards as to what constitutes authorized access since some users are oblivious to the ways they can be abused. This law is the reason why malware distribution, data theft, and cyber espionage are considered criminal.
Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)
This law was passed by the US Congress in 1991, but it continues to be relevant as it protects individuals from incessant and aggressive telemarketing calls. Enforced by the Federal Trade Commission, it is the underlying law for the National Do-Not-Call (DNC) Registry. Legitimate contact centers and telemarketing operators can be distinguished from unscrupulous ones with their TCPA compliance. They follow rules on the use of automated dialing systems, times to call, and the disclosure of collected data.
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
GDPR is a regulation created by the European Union, but it also impacts devices and digital services in other parts of the world. It establishes rules regarding the gathering, utilization, and storage of personal data. It empowers individuals to know and assert their rights over their personal data. It also allows individuals to request for their data to be erased and for them to opt out of data collection processes.
Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)
Children now have access to various web-enabled devices that put them at risk of various forms of cyberattacks. One law that protects them is COPPA, which governs data collection activities from device users younger than 13 years. It compels apps and sites to get the consent of the users’ parents first before they can collect any personal data.
IoT Cybersecurity laws and regulations
The United States has a law to address cyber threats associated with IoT devices, but its applicability is limited to IoT in federal offices. The European Union has better regulation through ETSI EN 303 645 V2.1.1, which sets standards for consumer IoT security. This regulation drives more effective security practices for the IoT ecosystem and the adoption of secure-by-design principles.
These laws and regulations do not necessarily mean that security software tools are no longer needed. However, they serve as the first line of protection for everyone who uses tech devices. It is still important to observe safe and secure tech usage practices and to be mindful of potential threats.