Lina Khan, the chair of the Federal Trade Commission, said she wanted the agency to consider regulations tackling "lax security practices, data privacy abuses, and algorithmic decision-making that may result in unlawful discrimination."
While Khan, a prominent tech skeptic, has previously suggested the FTC look at a broad rule-making on data issues, she outlined more specific concerns and detailed her own interest in the issue in a letter to Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal, whose office released the message on Friday.
"I applaud Chair Khan for committing to support a rule-making strengthening consumer privacy," said Blumenthal, who pushed for the move after years of congressional failure to pass a law on the issue.
Khan has also spent months streamlining the commission's rule-making procedures ahead of the move, which is likely to be time-consuming and prompt expensive pushback from big business.
The FTC, which currently has two commissioners from each party, is also facing political gridlock. Khan would likely need the votes of a third Democratic commissioner to begin working on regulations. Alvaro Bedoya, whom President Biden has nominated for the slot, is one of the agency picks still awaiting confirmation from the Senate.