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Consumer Reports applauds Maryland governor for signing key privacy bill into law

Annapolis, Maryland — Consumer Reports was among the groups on hand as Maryland Governor Wes Moore signed a comprehensive privacy bill (SB 541)into law today. The new law will extend baseline privacy rights to consumers, including the right to access, delete, and stop the sale of their personal information. 

CR worked with lawmakers throughout the legislative process to ensure the bill would offer consumers robust privacy protections. Maryland is now the seventeenth state to extend baseline privacy rights to its constituents. The law is scheduled to go into effect on October 1, 2025. 

“We congratulate the legislature and Governor Wes Moore for putting Marylanders first when it comes to privacy rights,” said Matt Schwartz, policy analyst at Consumer Reports. “Maryland is leading the way on privacy in the United States at a time when giant tech companies are using their influence to push back against such efforts. We hope this law will serve as a model for other states and Congress to follow when deliberating on their own privacy legislation.”

The Maryland law has several novel provisions that make it much stronger than most state privacy bills, including:

  • Data minimization provisions that prevent companies from collecting personal information for any purposes outside of providing the product or service consumers asked for.
  • Special protections for sensitive data that would ban third-party targeted advertising and data sales based on certain personal characteristics, such as race, religious beliefs, and health. The bill also bans third-party targeted advertising to minors, as well as sales of minors’ personal information.
  • Strong civil rights protections that ensure a business cannot process personal data to discriminate against individuals or otherwise make opportunity or public accommodation unavailable on the basis of protected classes. 

Contact: Cyrus Rassool, cyrus.rassool@consumer.org