Following the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology’s proposal that 39 Internet companies including Tencent and Alibaba should establish a “Dual List of Personal Information Protection”, the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Commission notified Taobao, JD.com, Pinduoduo, Suning.com, Kaola.com, and NetEase on November 9. Investigation of seven well-known e-commerce platforms Yanxuan and Vipshop.
The survey found that the seven platforms have problems as follows: consumers are required to agree to collect non-essential information by default in order to push personalized advertisements; all processes for de-identification of users’ personal information are hidden in the “default rules” of the platforms; Only the function of closing personalized Display is provided, but the function of terminating information collection is not provided. Even if consumers choose to close the targeted push, their consumption habits, search records and other information are still under mandatory collection.
Jiangsu Consumer Protection Committee believes that analyzing consumers’ shopping records and consumption habits to push personalized Display of products is not a basic function of online shopping, nor a necessary function of online shopping platforms. The platform requires consumers to accept that the collection of non-essential information is illegal and illegal to collect personal information, which infringes consumers’ right of choice, fair trade and personal information security.
Jiangsu Consumer Protection Committee notified the investigation of Taobao, Jingdong and other platforms
Have you ever encountered a similar situation when shopping on an e-commerce platform – just added a certain product to the shopping cart of e-commerce platform A, and then opened e-commerce platform B, and immediately received a recommendation advertisement for the product you just purchased.
The personalized advertisements in front of a thousand people may bring some convenience to some users, but it also brings troubles such as invasion of privacy to many users. On November 9, the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Committee announced the investigation of seven well-known e-commerce platforms including Taobao, JD.com, Pinduoduo, Suning.com, Kaola Haigou, Netease Yanxuan, and Vipshop.
According to the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Commission, the seven e-commerce platforms mentioned above require consumers to tacitly agree to collect non-essential information. In the survey, the seven platforms all bundled the display and browsing function of products and services based on personalized display with the user agreement, requiring consumers to agree to accept the platform’s tacit consent to collect and process consumers’ device information, service log information, browsing and search records, etc. The platform displays targeted and personalized products to consumers through consumption records and habits.
The survey found that the personalized display function seems to be convenient, but it actually limits the freedom of consumers to browse and shop. For example, after a consumer successfully purchases a certain product, the recommendation based on big data will still frequently receive the push of the purchased product. It is not smart and affects the shopping experience more.
Especially as to whether personalized push can be turned off, seven platforms have clearly stated in their user/privacy agreements that they can turn off personalized display if consumers are unwilling to use relevant recommendations. However, the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Commission found that the personalized display closing function is hidden and difficult to find. Compared with the platform’s default registration and consent to open related functions, consumers are in an unbalanced position of rights and obligations; the platform only provides the personalized display closing function. However, the information collection termination function is not provided, that is, even if consumers choose to turn off targeted push, their consumption habits, search records and other information are still being collected forcibly, and the security of personal information cannot be guaranteed.
The Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Committee believes that analyzing consumers’ shopping records and consumption habits to push personalized display of products is not a basic function of online shopping, nor a necessary function of online shopping platforms. Device information, service log information, browsing and search records are also It is not personal information necessary to realize the basic functions of the online shopping platform. The platform requires consumers to accept that the collection of non-essential information is illegal and illegal to collect personal information, which infringes consumers’ right of choice, fair trade and personal information security.
The personal information de-identification process is hidden in the platform’s “default rules”
Just last Monday (November 1), the day the Personal Information Protection Law was officially implemented, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology issued the “Notice on Carrying out the Action to Improve the Perception of Information and Communication Services”, which proposed that relevant Internet companies should establish a “double list” for personal information protection— — “List of collected personal information” and “List of personal information shared with third parties”, and display them in the App for users to query. The first batch of companies to set up “double lists” include 39 companies including Tencent, Alibaba, Meituan, Kuaishou, and Pinduoduo.
According to the provisions of the Personal Information Protection Law, the collection of personal information shall be limited to the minimum scope to achieve the purpose of processing, and personal information shall not be collected excessively; if a personal information processor provides other personal information processors with the personal information it processes, it shall notify the recipient to the individual name, contact information, processing purpose, processing method and type of personal information, and obtain the individual consent of the individual.
On November 5, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said in its interpretation of the above notice that users often reported that “browsing and purchasing products on a certain App, while other Apps will push relevant content”, users do not know where their personal information is shared, and it is easy to cause panic. Relevant companies should list the basic information of users’ personal information shared with third parties in the secondary menu, including the types of personal information shared with third parties, the purpose of use, usage scenarios, and sharing methods.
Regarding the sharing of personal information with third parties, the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Commission found that the above seven e-commerce platforms all require consumers to agree to share user personal information with third parties in their privacy policies. Although the e-commerce platform emphasizes in the terms that it will de-identify the user’s personal information, all the processes of de-identification are hidden in the platform’s “default rules”, and consumers cannot even verify whether the platform has really adopted The authenticity of relevant measures and relevant privacy policies cannot be verified.
Regarding the above-mentioned investigation, the Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Committee believes that the above-mentioned platform’s notification is not sufficient to protect consumers’ right to know; the platform only obtains general consent, which is not sufficient to protect the right to choose consumption; consumers cannot verify the actual situation of de-identification , which is different from the actual feeling.
The Jiangsu Provincial Consumer Protection Committee stated that it hopes that various e-commerce platforms will conduct self-examination and self-correction, take the initiative to correct, assume the responsibilities and obligations of operators in accordance with the law, and effectively protect the legitimate rights and interests of consumers.
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