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News Release
March 25, 2002
CONTACT: David Fish
(202) 289-8928

Online Privacy "Sweeps" to be Presented to FTC 
Muris, Other Commissioners to Attend Wednesday Briefing

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Federal Trade Commission Chairman Timothy J. Muris will offer opening remarks, and other FTC Commissioners will be in attendance, at the National Press Club Wednesday for the unveiling of the new national “Sweeps” study of on-line privacy policies. The Progress & Freedom Foundation will release the results for 2001 at 10:00 a.m. EST, in the Holeman Lounge.

Designed to update the report last issued by the Federal Trade Commission in 2000, the new survey – “Privacy Online: A Report on the Internet Practices and Policies of Commercial Websites” – measures the level of privacy protection at the most popular and a number of randomly-selected on-line destinations.

“The new ‘web sweeps’ survey measures the level of privacy protection at web sites visited by millions of Americans,” PFF President Jeffrey A. Eisenach said in announcing the study’s upcoming release. “Building upon the report issued by the Federal Trade Commission in May 2000, it will very likely have an important impact on the on-line privacy debate. There have been a number of significant developments.”

The Foundation retained the accounting firm of Ernst & Young to perform data collection and auditing for the survey. The firm began surveying the web pages of the top 100 e-commerce sites, plus a random sample of approximately 300 smaller sites, in December. The FTC released similar ‘web sweeps’ surveys for 2000 and 1998. Georgetown University sponsored the study for 1999. The new study is part of an extensive program of research and education on privacy-related issues initiated by the Foundation two years ago.

The National Press Club event is open to the public. Those wishing to attend should contact Eileen Goulding at 202-289-8928 or Members of the media should contact David Fish at 202-289-8928 or

The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) research & educational organization.



The Progress & Freedom Foundation