Privacy News | Daily Dashboard

Breaking news. In-depth articles. Global coverage.

Save time searching the headlines for privacy news in the media. Get the latest breaking privacy and data protection news from around the globe all in one place—The Daily Dashboard. Our FREE daily e-newsletter summarizes the day’s top privacy stories with links to the full articles—sent directly to your desktop each weekday!

Subscribe now!

Top Privacy News

DATA PROTECTION—U.S.

Charney: Notice and Consent Overburden the User

April 15, 2014

In a blog post for The Huffington Post, Microsoft’s Scott Charney discusses the future of commercial data privacy models, a topic he also discussed at the IAPP Global Privacy Summit in March. Because the availability of data is “rapidly changing how businesses operate,” a “whole range of new privacy challenges” have presented themselves, while the rules on privacy haven’t kept pace, Charney writes. While notice and consent are important, they are antiquated models that overly burden the user. The way forward? Increased organizational accountability, new enforcement models and a focus on risk assessments, to start.
Full Story

DATA PROTECTION—U.S.

Due Diligence Is Essential for Trust

April 15, 2014

These days, more privacy information is at risk than ever of being inadvertently accessed by hackers or unwitting Privacy Act (PA) program administrators within the government. Additionally, telecommunications and other laws, such as the USA PATRIOT Act, are cause for concern for U.S. citizens. If there is one control PA officers have, it’s to ensure each citizen request for data is diligently and thoroughly analyzed before any final decision is made on how to appropriately address the request, ensuring maximum access while protecting the identity of those whose data has been entrusted to the government. In this exclusive for The Privacy Advisor, the Department of the Interior’s Richard Lopez, Jr., discusses the importance of due diligence in the name of trust and integrity.
Full Story

PRIVACY COMMUNITY—U.S.

Goodwin Proctor Expands with Stegmaier

April 15, 2014

Gerry Stegmaier, CIPP/US, a longtime lawyer in the privacy space and current member of the IAPP Education Advisory Board, has moved from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati to join the privacy practice at Goodwin Proctor. “It means about 15 minutes more commuting time each way,” he joked, “further into the heart of DC, right across from the Renaissance Hotel,” which should be familiar to those who attended early versions of the IAPP Global Privacy Summit. In this exclusive for The Privacy Advisor, Sam Pfeifle talks to him about what triggered the move, where the industry is headed in the next five years and why it’s a good time to be a privacy professional.
Full Story

PRIVACY LAW—CANADA

A Close Look at Latest Bill To Enhance Gov’t Surveillance

April 15, 2014

In this Privacy Tracker post, Timothy Banks of Dentons Canada looks at Bill C-13, which attempts to grant law enforcement enhanced surveillance powers. “The proposed legislation has been promoted by the government as ‘anti-cyberbullying’ legislation; however, the new offence of unlawful distribution of intimate images is a small component of a suite of provisions intended to expand law enforcement tools to investigate online crime.” Noting previous attempts at increasing surveillance powers have met criticism from the federal and provincial privacy commissioners, Banks writes that this bill “is much more respectful of privacy rights ... However, the recent attempt to stifle debate in the House of Commons certainly could be interpreted as the government remaining uncomfortable with scrutiny of these provisions.” (IAPP member login required.)
Full Story

DATA LOSS—CANADA & UK

Two Sites Concede Heartbleed Data Losses

April 15, 2014

Two websites, Canada’s tax authority and a British parenting website, have said some of their users’ data has been compromised as a result of the Heartbleed bug, and, according to PC World, these are the first two admissions stemming from the now infamous OpenSSL security vulnerability that was exposed last week. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) blocked online public access to its site last week. “Regrettably, the CRA has been notified … of a malicious breach of taxpayer data that occurred over a six-hour period,” the CRA said. British parenting site Mumsnet assured its more than one million users it “followed all the published steps to protect members’ security … but it seems that the breach occurred prior to that risk becoming known.”
Full Story

SURVEILLANCE—U.S.

Pulitzers Awarded for NSA Reporting; Reforms Draw Criticism

April 15, 2014

The Washington Post and The Guardian have received the top award in U.S. journalism for their coverage of National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance practices. The Pulitzer Prizes announcement hails The Guardian for its “distinguished example of meritorious public service by a newspaper or news site through the use of its journalistic resources” and The Washington Post ”for its revelation of widespread secret surveillance … marked by authoritative and insightful reports that helped the public understand how the disclosures fit into the larger framework of national security.” Meanwhile, The Hill reports “the secrecy surrounding (NSA) reforms is getting blowback from tech companies and privacy activists” who believe the Obama administration’s “policy appears to be riddled with loopholes and won’t make the Internet any safer.”
Full Story

ONLINE PRIVACY

Google Updates Terms To Reflect Content Analysis

April 15, 2014

Amidst controversies with privacy groups over its scanning of user e-mail, PC World reports, “Google has updated its terms of service to reflect that it analyzes user content including e-mails to provide users tailored advertising, customized search results and other features.” The report highlights actions around Google’s practices and quotes the new terms of service, which went into effect Monday, as stating, “Our automated systems analyze your content (including e-mails) to provide you personally relevant product features, such as customized search results, tailored advertising and spam and malware detection. This analysis occurs as the content is sent, received and when it is stored.”
Full Story

CYBERSECURITY—U.S.

Retailers To Share Cyber-Threat Data

April 15, 2014

U.S.-based retailers are planning to establish an industry group for collecting and sharing cyber-threat intelligence in an attempt to thwart cyber-attacks similar to the one that compromised Target’s customers, Reuters reports. The National Retail Federation will form the Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC) by June. ISACs generally are run by security centers that operate 24 hours per day and alert members about emerging and potential threats, the report states. There are already a dozen such ISAC groups for financial, healthcare and other service industries. One expert said, “It will allow them to talk to each other about things (that) are hitting them, to know quickly if other people are experiencing the same things and if they’ve found good defenses that they can tell each other about.”
Full Story

INTERNET OF THINGS—U.S.

NYC Development Project Aims To Create Quantified Community

April 15, 2014

The New York Times reports on an urban informatics collaboration between developers of the Hudson Yards real estate project and researchers at New York University (NYU) to measure and model pedestrian flows, street traffic, air quality, energy use, waste disposal and recycling and the health and activity of laborers and residents, the report states. NYU researchers, aware of potential privacy concerns, back an opt-in regime for individuals whose activities and lifestyles would be measured. Collected data containing personal information will also be anonymized, the researchers said. The project may also help gauge people’s comfort level sharing personal information in such an environment. Meanwhile, a column for InformationWeek calls for a set of common policy principles for the Internet of Things ecosystem. (Registration may be required to access this story.)
Full Story

BIG DATA

Scientists Using Tweets To Determine Flu Outbreaks

April 15, 2014

Scientists from Pennsylvania State University say they’ve developed a way to find Twitter posts that identify viral illnesses, InformationWeek reports. In a recently published paper, “On the Ground Validation of Online Diagnosis with Twitter and Medical Records,” researchers say they’ve created “a system for making an accurate influenza diagnosis based on an individual’s publicly available Twitter data.” The researchers say they were able to determine, with 99-percent accuracy, whether an influenza outbreak was occurring by combining text analysis, anomaly detection and social network analysis. In 2008, similarly, Google began estimating flu infections by tracking flu-related search terms.
Full Story

DATA PROTECTION

10 Steps To a Quality Privacy Program (Part 8): Learn From Others’ Mistakes

April 14, 2014

In the latest installment of her 10-part series on creating a quality privacy program, Deidre Rodriguez, CIPP/US, discusses the importance of learning from others’ mistakes in order to keep your brand out of trouble. “The least painful and easiest lessons are the ones that we can learn from others’ mistakes,” Rodriguez writes in this exclusive for The Privacy Advisor. “As privacy professionals, it’s important that we take time to peruse the headlines and read articles that talk about others’ mistakes.” She outlines four action items privacy pros should take while scanning headlines. Editor’s Note: Did you miss the first seven installments of this series? See them here.
Full Story

PRIVACY

Making the Case for Surprise Minimization

April 14, 2014

Last week, Facebook announced it was unveiling a new set of user privacy controls. The move comes a month after the IAPP Global Privacy Summit, where Facebook CPO Erin Egan said, “If people are surprised, that’s not good for me.” What did she mean, exactly? This post for Privacy Perspectives looks at the promise of surprise minimization and how, “in a Big Data and Internet of Things world where providing users with notice and choice can prove difficult,” it “is becoming a powerful tool businesses can use to help engender trust with consumers while avoiding the ire of regulators.”
Full Story