In recent years, information privacy has emerged as one of the central issues of our times. Today, we have hundreds of laws pertaining to privacy - the common law torts, criminal law, evidentiary privileges, constitutional law, at least twenty federal statutes, and numerous statutes in each of the fifty states. To understand the law of information privacy more completely, it is necessary to look to its origins and growth. This article provides a brief overview of the history of the development of information privacy law. In particular, it explores the way that the law has emerged in response to changes in technology that have increased the collection, dissemination, and use of personal information.
Daniel J. Solove, The Origins and Growth of Information Privacy Law, 748 PLI/PAT 29 (2003).