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DMA STATEMENT ON SPYWARE LEGISLATION
WASHINGTON, May 24, 2005 -The Direct Marketing Association (The DMA) issued the following statement regarding two bills that passed yesterday evening in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Internet Spyware Prevention Act of 2005 (I-SPY) (H.R. 744) and the Securely Protect Yourself Against Cyber Trespass Act (SPY ACT) (H.R. 29).
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"We are pleased that the House has taken this positive step toward a national standard that will protect consumers from unwanted and potentially damaging or illegal spyware," said Jerry Cerasale, senior vice president for government affairs at The DMA.
"The DMA strongly believes that consumers should be in control of their computers, and we are working with marketers to promote responsible and ethical electronic communications.
"We believe that there is still work to be done on these bills prior to enactment and look forward to working with the sponsors of these bills as well as members of the Senate towards a solution that protects consumers' control over their computers while not impeding legitimate technologies.
In regard to spyware, The DMA believes that consumers have the right to be notified when software is installed on their computers, and they must be given a simple way to remove or decline such programs.
"Moreover, under no circumstances should any software program collect personally identifiable information, such as credit card data, Social Security numbers or bank-account information from an individual's computer without that person's knowledge.
"We view the passage of these two House bills as a big step toward a workable national standard that protects both businesses and consumers. We will remain engaged with members of Congress, our own membership, and other stakeholders as the House and Senate move toward a final bill."
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