Inside 1to1:Privacy


October 1, 2007

This month, we tackle an issue that many organizations grapple with -- measuring the ROI of a Chief Privacy Officer (CPO). One thing is clear: many companies -- and even government agencies -- are eager for objective measures of a CPO's performance.

One seasoned CPO quoted in the story below suggests that a measurement framework must include both statistical benchmarks as well as anecdotal feedback from consumers and clients. Perhaps quite selfishly, I would like to suggest that achieving IAPP certification in information privacy has become an industry standard for privacy professionals -- an achievement that has become the benchmark for hiring and promoting privacy pros. This month's issue then moves from privacy measures to privacy controls as they relate to teens and the kinds of tactics they employ to safeguard their privacy on social networking sites. This story looks at the results of two recent studies on the topic of youths and online privacy.

All professions have some measurement benchmarks that employers use to assess achievement. The privacy profession is relatively young, and we are still building the essential elements that will serve as the basis for measuring our success and contributions. In your view, what are the measures that employers should rely on to judge a CPO's performance? Email me your suggestions.

J. Trevor Hughes, CIPP
Executive Director, IAPP