A Home panel will examine the dealing with of reproductive well being knowledge

A Home investigative committee is searching for particulars from sure firms about how they deal with private reproductive and sexual well being info in an effort to bolster knowledge privateness for abortion seekers as extra states ban the process.

Home Oversight Committee Chair Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., and two different members despatched letters to 10 knowledge brokers and private well being apps searching for documentation about their practices for gathering and promoting private reproductive well being knowledge.

The Supreme Court docket eradicated the constitutional proper to an abortion two weeks in the past, sparking new issues amongst privateness advocates over the potential misuse of information for these searching for abortions.

“The gathering of delicate knowledge may pose critical threats to these searching for reproductive care in addition to to suppliers of such care, not solely by facilitating intrusive authorities surveillance, but in addition by placing individuals vulnerable to harassment, intimidation, and even violence,” Maloney wrote within the letter with Democratic Reps. Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois and Sara Jacobs of California.

“Geographic knowledge collected by cellphones could also be used to find individuals searching for care at clinics, and search and chat historical past referring to clinics or medicine create digital bread crumbs revealing curiosity in an abortion,” they added.

The lawmakers urged that profiteers in states that reward residents who implement the bans may goal individuals searching for abortion care “by buying location knowledge from knowledge brokers.”

The letters had been addressed to executives at 5 knowledge firms, together with SafeGraph, Digital Envoy and Placer.ai. One other batch of letters was despatched to executives of well being apps that observe fertility cycles, together with Flo Well being, Glow and BioWink GmbH.

The letters requested the businesses to offer paperwork by July 21.

A examine revealed final month by the peer-reviewed Journal of Medical Web Analysis indicated that 20 of the 23 ceaselessly downloaded ladies’s well being apps it examined shared consumer knowledge with third events and that simply over half requested for specific consent from their customers.

Eight states have already banned abortion companies for the reason that Supreme Court docket’s choice. Others have imposed new restrictions, with extra bans scheduled to take impact within the coming weeks.

The congressional investigation additionally indicators efforts by Democrats to protect entry to knowledge that could possibly be used for punitive functions in states the place abortions are unlawful.

In June, a Senate committee started contemplating a invoice launched by Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, to offer a person proper to have entry to non-public reproductive and sexual well being knowledge retained by regulated entities, together with knowledge from third events, and to request its deletion.

Chloe Atkins contributed.