John Hancock transitioning to interactive life insurance policies

(Sep 21, 2018) After unveiling its first interactive life insurance policy in 2015, John Hancock, one of the oldest and largest life insurers in North America, announced it will stop underwriting traditional life insurance and begin exclusively selling interactive policies, Reuters reports. The interactive life insurance policies, pioneered with Vitality Group, track fitness, health data and lifestyle through wearable devices and smartphones and allow policyholders to score premium discounts and gift cards for... Read More

OCR fines Boston hospitals $1M for allowing TV crews to film without patient consent

(Sep 21, 2018) The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office for Civil Rights has fined three Boston-area hospitals a combined $1 million for violating the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act after they allowed TV crews to film patients without their consent, HealthITSecurity reports. Boston Medical Center, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Massachusetts General Hospital were hit with the fines for compromising patients' personal health information when they allowed the filming of th... Read More

China on path toward a 'digital dictatorship'?

(Sep 20, 2018) Providing an in-depth look into China’s “social credit” system, ABC News reports that if successful, it will result in “the world’s first digital dictatorship.” Following citizens as they navigate the pilot program, the report examines what influences a person’s social score and the associated risks and benefits it carries for a person's future. While Dandan Fan, who scored 773 out of 800, sees no ill effect of constant surveillance and social ranking, Investigative Reporter Liu Hu warns of the ... Read More

Recent debates put privacy issues mainstream

(Sep 20, 2018) In an article for The Australian, Rachel Dixon, privacy and data protection deputy commissioner at the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner, commented on the country’s evolving perception of privacy and the legislative challenges associated with developing a privacy framework. Recent debates over the country’s electronic health records system and recent encryption legislation have sparked a much-needed conversation about privacy more broadly. “Not that many years ago there was (a vie... Read More

Roundtable report offers ways to improve sharing opioid patient data

(Sep 18, 2018) The Center for Open Data Enterprise released a report on the Roundtable on Data Sharing Policies, Data-Driven Solutions, and the Opioid Crisis it co-hosted with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Chief Technology Officer earlier this year, FedScoop reports. The report details recommendations for ways to improve sharing health care data to help combat opioid addiction, such as repealing Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 2 in order to remove constraints ... Read More

Why we must remember where informed consent comes from

(Sep 14, 2018) In an excellent IAPP podcast interview by Angelique Carson, CIPP/US, Woody Hartzog makes the compelling point that informed consent was originally developed for rare, high-risk and potentially life-threatening situations, like surgery and medical research. Hartzog argues that the process of informed consent is not designed for, nor can it offer fair choices for, the "micro-permissions" that occur in our daily interaction with technology. What Hartzog points out derives from a fundamental differe... Read More

Privacy breach among reasons for professor's firing

(Sep 14, 2018) CBC News reports a breach of privacy was among the reasons why Acadia University fired a controversial professor. Rick Mehta had been accused of harassing and intimidating students and colleagues. One of the complaints against Mehta states the former professor posted a recording to a publicly available Dropbox account for one of his classes where a student discussed the instance in which she was raped. "This action further demonstrates your disregard for the privacy rights of students and sugges... Read More

Court rules GCHQ bulk collection violated human rights

(Sep 13, 2018) In a long-awaited decision out of Strasbourg, France, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled the U.K. Government Communications Headquarters bulk intelligence program violated privacy, the Guardian reports. In a detailed decision, the ECHR looked at three aspects of surveillance: bulk collection of digital communications, the sharing of intelligence with other agencies, and obtaining communications data from telecommunications companies. In a five-to-two vote, the judges found that the GCH... Read More

Op-ed: Do we need the CaCPA whistleblower provision back?

(Sep 12, 2018) During its evolution from citizen ballot initiative to state law, the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 underwent several changes, including the elimination of a provision that would have provided some protection for whistleblowers. "We can only speculate as to why the provision was struck down during negotiations," writes Santa Clara Law Professor Lydia de la Torre, CIPP/US, "but clearly the deletion benefits the industry potentially at the expense of dutiful data professionals who may ha... Read More

New lawsuit highlights BYOD gray areas for employers

(Sep 12, 2018) The former managing director of Brevet Capital Management is suing his former employer for allegedly accessing his computer to read emails and steal data held on two personal hard drives he owned, The Wall Street Journal reports. Paul Iacovacci claims Brevet installed software allowing the firm to copy and transfer data out of the hard drives following the ex-director filing a lawsuit for wrongful termination. The ruling in the case could inform future lawsuits as bring-your-own-device policies ... Read More