Posted in May 2013


Did We Get The Right Privacy Tort?

As Canadian privacy professionals will know, 2012 saw a significant development in Canadian tort law with respect to privacy. While some lower courts have recognized an “invasion of privacy” tort or said there might be one, higher courts refused to countenance the existence of such a tort until the Ontario Court of Appeal did so in Jones v. Tsige.

More from Michael Power


Will the Right To Be Forgotten Lead to a Society That Was Forgotten?

The “right to be forgotten,” a fundamental part of the proposed reforms to the EU’s data protection legislation, is being watched closely by professionals in the archives world. From a bird’s eye view, this proposal would have an undeniable effect on the preservation of the individual and collective memory of society.

Although the rationale and intent of the proposal is based on increasing concerns over the impact of rapidly advancing and intrusive technologies on the lives of people, the implications for the appraisal, selection and preservation of records containing personal data over time are very real and will need to be carefully considered. This proposal must be reviewed with the understanding that archival records—records of enduring administrative, legal, fiscal, cultural, historical and intrinsic value—represent the essence of a society and provide glimpses into the past and lessons for future generations.

More from Cherri-Ann Beckles

From the Toolbelt

The ABCs of BCRs


Prior to commencing my employment in 2012, my employer decided to enhance their data protection program with the EU-U.S. Safe Harbor certification, but then the European Commission published new privacy reforms. Upon hire, my primary directive was to decide between Safe Harbor and Binding Corporate Rules (BCRs).

More from K Royal


When Someone Goes All Crazy on You and Spams Your Online Profile With Nastiness

By Jedidiah Bracy, CIPP/US, CIPP/E

Last week I discussed the concept of the “digital tattoo” and how our online footprint can have lasting effects—for better or worse. Well, teens and others who were liberal with their use of Snapchat may be scrambling today as news comes out that the app’s 10 seconds-or-less deletion feature may be saving photos directly on the user’s phone. Uh-oh. Here’s what in Utah is reporting:

Orem-based firm Decipher Forensics said it has derived a method to extract the supposedly no-longer-viewable images and pass them on to parents, lawyers and law enforcement.

“The actual app is even saving the picture,” said Richard Hickman, a digital forensics examiner. “They claim that it’s deleted, and it’s not even deleted. It’s actually saved on the phone.”

More from Jedidiah Bracy


Designing Privacy EVERYWHERE: Whirlwind Excursions Discussing Privacy Integration

By Mary Ellen Callahan, CIPP/US

From Maryland to Ireland, Slovakia to Florida, privacy professionals and their industry colleagues are working on integrating privacy by design into business models and functionality. This ambition became evident to me when I spoke at five conferences in three countries on how to most effectively integrate privacy into the core functionality of business operations. This global trend should make the folks at IAPP happy! Here’s a glimpse of my whirlwind tour.


Big Data Surveillance and Why Privacy Pros Ought To Pay Attention to the PCLOB

This week, Congress finally acted to bring the U.S. Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) to its full strength and enable it to begin its critical mission. With the confirmation Tuesday of David Medine as chair of the PCLOB, Medine and his distinguished bipartisan group of colleagues will finally be able to begin their work in earnest.

The PCLOB is a vital guardian of Americans’ privacy rights and civil liberties. As an independent voice for privacy and civil liberties, it will oversee executive branch activities with civil liberties implications, including intelligence, counter-terrorism and law enforcement activities. The PCLOB will also offer guidance to the president and federal agencies on ways to ensure that counterterrorism practices respect basic constitutional protections principles.

More from Daniel Weitzner

Point - Counterpoint

How Do Not Track Can Save the Online Ad Industry

Last Thursday, Adam Thierer took a skeptical view of Do Not Track in this blog. Echoing his recent testimony before the Senate Commerce Committee, Adam cast doubts on Do Not Track as a silver-bullet solution to online privacy woes. He noted the previous failures of policy solutions (such as P3P and CAN-SPAM) to fix online privacy issues, and he posited that users might end up opting in to far more invasive tracking as a result.

By and large, I think Adam’s pessimism is misplaced. Certainly I agree with him that Do Not Track will not be a panacea for all—or even just online—privacy concerns. But it was never envisioned as a silver bullet. To the contrary, Do Not Track is rather humbly intended as a scalable way for users to tell the universe of third-party tracking companies to stop amassing profiles about what they do online.

More from Justin Brookman