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The IAPP Privacy Academy at the Green Valley Ranch Resort in Las Vegas brought the IAPP's second major event of the year to the great casino city in an effort to determine: Do the things in that happen in Vegas REALLY stay in Vegas? In addition to exploring key themes of identity management and personal surveillance, The IAPP Privacy Academy offered attendees valuable opportunities to network with each other, educate themselves with the latest developments in privacy law, policy and technology — and become certified in their profession. Nearly 600 professionals came together for the largest Academy gathering yet — and the second largest IAPP gathering in history.

Memorable Academy highlights included:

Incisive and thought-provoking keynotes. Noted author David Brin opened the conference with intriguing observations on privacy and social systems. IBM's Jeff Jonas revealed common casino trickery and explained how his NORA model helps identify non-obvious relationships in people and data in order to expose potential threats. Former hacker and current security consultant Kevin Mitnick brought an anonymous audience member to the Academy stage and showed the audience how easily personal information could be gleaned from online public sources.

Entertaining member events.
The poolside Identity Masquerade Reception had guests don one of three pairs of theme sunglasses to discreetly disguise their identity while partaking in the fun. Attendees cashed in their IAPP poker chips for complimentary cocktails while dining on a tasty banquet of world cuisines. And no Las Vegas event would be complete without the requisite Elvis, Marilyn Monroe and Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonators, each of whom walked the reception floor and posed for member photos.

Recognition of privacy leaders in industry and government.
The prestigious HP/IAPP Privacy Innovation Awards were presented to Sprint Nextel, (large organization category), and the Information and Privacy Commission of Ontario, headed by Dr. Ann Cavoukian, (small organization category). Software vendor Watchfire, won the very first HP/IAPP Privacy Innovation Technology Award. And Nuala O'Connor Kelly, General Electric's new Chief Privacy Leader and Senior Counsel, took home the IAPP/Deloitte & Touche Vanguard Award, for her work in 2005 as Chief Privacy Officer at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

IAPP also hosted a number of program and events in support of privacy certification. On October 26, more than 100 privacy professionals gathered for the full-day privacy certification training course held in the Academy's main plenary hall. IAPP faculty presenters included Peggy Eisenhauer, Founder of PrivacyStudio.com, Brendon Lynch, Senior Privacy Strategist, Microsoft, Barbara Lawler, Chief Privacy Officer, Hewlett-Packard and Dr. Stuart Shapiro, Lead Information Security Scientist, MITRE Corporation, among others. Students learned privacy fundamentals across a number of key areas from law and compliance, IT and Web systems to international data flows and employee hiring and monitoring. Each session closed with a lively Q&A session and registrants enjoyed a World-Series-themed refreshment break in the afternoon.

That evening, members of the IAPP Board of Directors and the CIPP Advisory Board joined program sponsors and developers, CIPP graduates and future candidates at the Whiskey Bar to toast the one-year anniversary of the CIPP program. The invitation-only CIPP Reception was sponsored by Ingrian Networks, and featured tasty hors d'oeuvres and cocktails under a pleasantly mild Las Vegas night!

The Academy's certification events concluded on the final plenary day with the CIPP and CIPP/G examinations. More than 150 examinees gathered for the 2-hour, timed-test period on Friday morning.

Overall, attendees who took advantage of the IAPP's offerings went home with valuable new information. "There are so many good sessions, it is hard to get information from all of them," one attendee remarked. "Excellent speakers and conference — very well-run," said another. "There were very interesting speakers, timely topics and effective panel presentations (and) discussions," an attendee said afterward.

For some, it was all about the chance to meet fellow privacy pros and discuss common issues. "The best part was the networking opportunities," one attendee said when asked for feedback on the Academy.

So mark your calendars for your next opportunity to join us for networking, education and certification at the IAPP National Summit 2006, March 8 -10, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C.


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