Why US privacy legislation should include 'data stewards'

(Apr 23, 2019) In an blog post for the Information Accountability Foundation, Lynn Goldstein, CIPP/US, writes that while the U.S Federal Trade Commission touted the inclusion of “information fiduciaries” at recent hearings regarding what the future of U.S. privacy legislation may resemble, “data stewards” would be more applicable. She writes that while the FTC noted “information fiduciaries” would serve to protect consumers from the dangers posed by data collection, use and sharing, “the role of the data stewa... Read More

Op-ed: Digitized health care industry hinges on privacy

(Apr 23, 2019) In an op-ed for Wired, Robert Wachter writes that secure data sharing between health systems and companies on a digital platform will inevitably happen within the next 10 years, but a lack of privacy considerations will slow the process. "One of the biggest obstacles we face in this essential move to the digitisation of healthcare is public concern about privacy," wrote Wachter, who highlighted the 1.6 million patient records shared between the U.K. National Health System and artificial intellig... Read More

Perspective: A look at the Polish DPA's first GDPR fine

(Apr 22, 2019) In this Privacy Perspectives post, Karolina Gałęzowska writes that the first post-EU General Data Protection Regulation decision by Poland's data protection authority, the PUODO, and its first fine, raises questions about the GDPR's retroactive applicability, transparency, procedural justice and legal competence. Gałęzowska argues, in this op-ed, “the issue of disproportionate punishment, alongside the question of PUODO’s competence to act, may be among the most prominent in this case.”Full Stor... Read More

Op-ed: Ad tech should look into differential privacy

(Apr 22, 2019) In an op-ed for AdExchanger, Victor Wong writes about why it might be time for the ad tech industry to take a look at differential privacy. Wong cites the efforts by the U.S. Census Bureau to incorporate differential privacy into its practices, as well as efforts by both Apple and Uber to do the same. “By embracing forms of differential privacy, the industry can provide transparency while protecting consumer privacy,” writes Wong. “Bad actors and poor performance can be identified and eliminated... Read More

How data inference technology exposes privacy-minded users

(Apr 22, 2019) In an op-ed for The New York Times, Zeynep Tufekci explains how “data inference” technology is used to uncover information on even the most privacy-conscious online users. Due to the abundance of data on billions of other people on the internet, she points out that a user’s discretion is no longer enough to guarantee online privacy. Highlighting recent examples proving tech’s ability to ascertain user data from others, Tufekci suggests phones and devices should be designed to be more privacy-pro... Read More

Op-ed: What US lawmakers should learn from the EU

(Apr 22, 2019) In an op-ed for The Hill, Dan Goldstein and Adam Rowan write about the U.S.'s lagging efforts on federal privacy regulation and what can be learned from the EU. "The U.K. and the European Union have long pushed for restrictions favoring privacy and security for online users. The United States, meanwhile, has only begun to make progress in instituting regulations on what Facebook and other tech giants do with user data. What happens in the U.K happens in the U.S., so what’s the hold up?" writes G... Read More

Op-ed: More focus is needed to develop de-identification techniques

(Apr 19, 2019) While privacy advocates push for greater data use restrictions, an op-ed for The Hill looks at how doing so could carry a negative consequence for individual patient health outcomes and broader public health goals. The authors write that rather than focusing on imposing greater restrictions for health data, more effort should be placed on developing better de-identification techniques to protect useful data. Using Amazon’s interest and expansion into the health care field, the authors write that... Read More

Geist: OPC's trans-border policy reform will be challenging

(Apr 19, 2019) In an op-ed for The Globe and Mail, University of Ottawa Canada Research Chair for Internet and E-Commerce Law Michael Geist writes about the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada's decision to explore privacy law reform related to cross-border data transfers. Geist writes that Canada is moving away from an “accountability principle” relating to safeguards for transfers to third parties outside Canada while placing more emphasis on consent for trans-border data flows. Geist argues the shi... Read More

Op-ed: Obscurity needs to become an important privacy concept

(Apr 18, 2019) In an op-ed for The New York Times’ Privacy Project, Woodrow Hartzog and Evan Selinger write about the importance of obscurity as a privacy concept. The authors explain obscurity is “the privacy you have in public and the privacy you have in groups”; however, the proliferation of cellphone location data and facial-recognition technologies, for example, has impacted an individual’s ability to be obscure. Hartzog and Selinger state the failure to value obscurity “shows where we’ve gone wrong in th... Read More

NYT builds facial-recognition system for $60 for 'The Privacy Project'

(Apr 17, 2019) As part of its recent launch of “The Privacy Project,” The New York Times reports on the facial images it was able to collect through cameras at Bryant Park. For the study, the Times gathered public images captured by three cameras that surveyed a section of the park. One day of footage was run through Amazon’s commercial facial-recognition service, which resulted in 2,750 faces detected over a nine-hour period. The Times reports the total cost of all the work came to $60. In an op-ed for “The P... Read More