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Understanding the Difference between CPRA and CCPA: A Closer Look at California's Privacy Laws

Governments around the world are enacting legislation to protect individuals' personal information, and California is at the forefront of this movement in the United States. The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) was the first comprehensive privacy law in the country, but it has been recently amended by the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA). In this blog post, we will delve into the differences between CPRA and CCPA, highlighting how these laws impact individuals and businesses.

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  1. Scope and Applicability:

The CCPA, which came into effect on January 1, 2020, grants California residents certain rights and imposes obligations on businesses that collect and process their personal information. It applies to companies that meet specific thresholds, such as those with annual gross revenues over $25 million, those that buy, sell, or share personal information of 50,000 or more consumers, and those that derive 50% or more of their annual revenue from selling personal information.

The CPRA, approved by California voters in November 2020, builds upon the CCPA. It expands the privacy rights granted to individuals and introduces new obligations for businesses. The CPRA applies to businesses that exceed a higher threshold, with annual gross revenues over $25 million, those that handle personal information of 100,000 or more consumers or households, and those engaged in the sale or sharing of personal information of 100,000 or more consumers or households.

  1. Enhanced Consumer Rights:

Both the CCPA and CPRA aim to empower consumers by giving them more control over their personal information. Under both laws, individuals have the right to know what personal information is being collected, the purposes for collection, and the categories of third parties with whom their data is shared. They also have the right to access, delete, and correct their personal information.

However, the CPRA introduces new rights that go beyond those provided by the CCPA. For instance, individuals now have the right to limit the use of their sensitive personal information, such as social security numbers, driver's license numbers, and biometric data. The CPRA also grants consumers the right to correct inaccurate personal information held by businesses.

  1. Introduction of the "Sensitive Personal Information" Category:

One significant addition brought about by the CPRA is the concept of "sensitive personal information." While the CCPA focuses on personal information in general, the CPRA introduces a more stringent framework for sensitive data. This includes information such as social security numbers, financial account information, precise geolocation data, racial or ethnic origin, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, and certain health and biometric information. Businesses are subject to additional obligations and restrictions when handling this sensitive personal information.

  1. Strengthened Enforcement and Enhanced Penalties:

The CPRA strengthens enforcement mechanisms compared to the CCPA. It establishes a dedicated state agency, the California Privacy Protection Agency (CPPA), responsible for implementing and enforcing the law. The CCPA was primarily enforced by the California Attorney General's office.

The CPRA also introduces new penalties for violations. For certain data breaches resulting from a failure to implement reasonable security practices, fines of up to $7,500 per violation can be imposed. Additionally, fines for intentional violations involving the personal information of minors are even higher.


The introduction of the CPRA builds upon the foundations laid by the CCPA and further strengthens privacy protections for California residents. With its enhanced consumer rights, focus on sensitive personal information, and stricter enforcement mechanisms, the CPRA raises the bar for businesses in terms of privacy compliance.

As businesses continue to adapt to these evolving privacy laws, it is essential to stay informed and ensure compliance with the applicable regulations. Both the CCPA and CPRA reflect California's commitment to safeguarding consumer privacy and serve as models for privacy legislation across the United States. By understanding the key differences between these laws, individuals can exercise greater control over their personal information, and businesses can navigate the evolving privacy landscape while building trust with their customers.

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