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Industry-led, Market-based Solutions Key to IoT Growth, says CTA

Arlington, VA – June 3, 2016 – 

The Consumer Technology Association (CTA)™ today submitted written comments to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration at the Department of Commerce’s proceeding examining “The Benefits, Challenges, and Potential Roles for the Government in Fostering the Advancement of the Internet of Things (IoT).”  In its comments, CTA notes that a fragmented approach of IoT development would  create a complex web of specific laws, rules and regulatory regimes that may not always be obvious and could be particularly difficult for smaller companies to navigate.

  “Rather than dictating outcomes, the government must allow consumers and the market to decide IoT winners and losers,” said Julie Kearney, vice president regulatory affairs at CTA. “We hope policymakers recognize that private sector, consensus-driven industry self-regulation has historically minimized consumer harms while maximizing the flexibility to innovate. Moreover, a strong partnership between the public sector and private sector can build consumer confidence and trust that will boost adoption of technologies and catalyze industry discussions in IoT.”

  The comments say the federal government can help the development of the IoT by spurring research and development, lowering taxes, adopting policies that promote skilled immigration. More, the government can ensure consumer trust in IoT by safeguarding consumer privacy, sensitive data and network security under existing statutes and regulations.

  “The IoT will have significant and long-lasting benefits for consumers and society, while solidifying American technological leadership,” added Kearney. “From thermostats and refrigerators to entire factories of equipment or sensors in a connected city, IoT applications and devices save time and expense, promote public health and safety and are key economic drivers for the U.S. economy. There is no telling with the future holds as the sector experiences exponential innovation gains, but policymakers must work with industry to ensure any actions taken in the name of consumer protection do not inadvertently hamstring the myriad of consumer-friendly IoT developments.”

  CTA proposes policymakers favor market-based solutions over prescriptive regulations. The full comments can be viewed here.

About the Consumer Technology Assocation

Consumer Technology Association (CTA) ™ is the trade association representing the $287 billion U.S. consumer technology industry. More than 2,200 companies - 80 percent are small businesses and startups; others are among the world's best known brands - enjoy the benefits of CTA membership including policy advocacy, market research, technical education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. The Consumer Technology Association also owns and produces CES® - the world's gathering place for all who thrive on the business of consumer technologies. Profits from CES are reinvested into CTA's industry services.