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Fact Sheet

The Privacy Leadership Initiative, Inc. is a partnership of visionary Chairmen/CEOs from America's most recognized and reputable corporations and organizations dedicated to creating a climate of trust — online and off-line — so that consumers feel more comfortable doing business in today's information-driven economy.

For a list of members, please click here.

Why We Formed

The PLI was formed to provide consumers with increased knowledge and resources to help them make informed choices about sharing their personal information. We also help businesses, both large and small — in all industries — develop and maintain good privacy practices. Trust and choice are the foundation of good privacy practices, yet research shows that there is currently a lack of trust between consumers and businesses. Individuals must trust responsible businesses to use personal information in ways that benefit them — such as better, less expensive and personalized products and services — while also providing them with choices about how much personal information is gathered and by whom. Through the establishment of a common understanding about the benefits of exchanging personal information and how it can be safeguarded, the PLI will begin to restore consumer confidence.

What We're Doing

Given that privacy is a question of trust and behavior, the PLI is developing an "etiquette"--model practices for the exchange of personal information between businesses and consumers. We will help create this code of conduct by engaging in a multi-year, multi-level effort to educate consumers and businesses. Specifically, the PLI will:

1. Conduct original research to measure and track attitudes and behavior changes among consumers and to better understand how the flow of information affects the economy and people's lives on a day-to-day basis;
2. Compile and refine existing privacy guidelines and create The Privacy Manager's Resource Center, a new service for that assists businesses in developing their privacy programs
3. Design an interactive Web site — understandingprivacy.org — to make privacy simpler for consumers, businesses, trade groups, journalists, academics, policymakers and all other interested parties; and
4. Educate consumers about technology and tools that protect their interests without diminishing the benefits of exchanging personal preferences with responsible companies.

Whether online or off, the flow of information is critical to the growth and success of our economy. Members of the PLI recognize that businesses must take an active role in ensuring that privacy practices evolve to meet consumer needs. While there is no simple answer for an issue this complex, for PLI members that means understanding what individuals want, tackling those challenges and initiating change, while being accountable and building confidence. These are the keys to creating a climate of trust between responsible businesses and consumers.