Amid continuing fallout from Facebook's massive user data scandal and increased scrutiny of how the tech industry handles consumers' informationis calling for a national privacy law in the U.S.
"What we need is a national privacy law, and that will really not just protect the tech industry; it's going to protect all the consumers. Ultimately, it's going to protect our kids, which is really what this is all about because we know that all these companies are looking to bring kids into their social networks as well," he told "CBS This Morning" on Wednesday.
Salesforce, a cloud computing company that builds software to connect businesses with its customers, has 30,000 employees and more than 150,000 customers worldwide. It topped Fortune magazine's 2018 list of the 100 best companies to work for. Benioff, who is also the company's founder and chairman, said his industry is going through a "significant crisis of trust."
"In some ways you can say Facebook has really become the new cigarettes in our industry. That is, it's a technology that is, yeah it's addictive, it may not be that great for you and it might be something that you might want to go back to. So, maybe this is a time where the government has to step in and regulate not just that product but really our industry. We're really at that point with technology," Benioff said.
The influential Silicon Valley CEO pointed to Europe's General Data Protection Regulation law, or GDPR, which is set to go into effect later this month, and the proposed California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 as signs that the U.S. needs to get on board with federal privacy protection laws. So what would that regulation look like?
"That would mean the companies would have to fully disclose how they collect your information, use your information, and you'd have a right to be forgotten so that if you want all your information deleted, you can hit that button and be assured that your data is gone forever," he said.
To hear what Benioff had to say about the gender pay gap, watch the above video.