When some people think about personal information, they think about bank account numbers, location history, and the contents of their chat messages with friends. All of that private information is part of the personal information protected by the CCPA, and the CCPA protects much more than that. 

The CCPA considers personal information to include anything that can be associated with a particular person or household, such as your name, email address or a grocery list. Even if your name or contact information is a matter of public record, it’s still personal information under the CCPA. 

Other examples of personal information include your gender, your image, voice, location, search history, purchase history, and even potentially the IP address your phone or PC uses to connect to the Internet.

Finally, personal information includes any inferences that can be drawn about you from other information. For example, if your browsing or purchase history suggests you’re a wine lover, that interest category is part of your personal information. 

This definition of personal information is central to the CCPA — keep it in mind as we explore consumer rights under the law and note that when I refer to “data” in the remainder of this course, that is shorthand for data that is personal information under the CCPA.