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US Governor proposing radical new legislation on data in Silicon Valley

A newly elected US Governor is proposing radical new legislation that will tackle how data is controlled in Silicon Valley.

The Governor of California Gavin Newsom believes that internet firms should pay users especially when you consider that many of them make profits from acquiring their personal data.

The Governor announced his data initiative during a State of the State address and said consumers needed transparency in relation to how their data is being used and referenced privacy legislation which was passed last year.

Newsom said, “Consumers have a right to know and control how their data is being used. But California's consumers should also be able to share in the wealth that is created from their data."

Silicon Valley-based behemoths like Google and Facebook are the dominant players on the multi-billion dollar global online digital advertising market. Facebook are able to directly target users with other advertisements that may be of interest to them based on their search results.

However, that practice has been met with sharp criticism from some privacy watchdogs who have determined that people in many ways have been turned into products by internet companies whose paying customers are advertisers.

Newsom expressed his pride that California was home to many revolutionary and technology thought leaders that have in many ways completely transformed the world, but also highlighted their responsibility to protect their users.

Newsom added, “California is proud to be home to technology companies determined to change the world. But companies that make billions of dollars collecting, curating and monetizing our personal data have a duty to protect it."

Newsom shared little detail about his data proposal and remained coy, saying he had asked members of his team to work on it because ‘we recognize that your data has value and it belongs to you’.