With U.S. Politically Divided, Multi-Stakeholder Processes Are the Future

March 6, 2014
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) led a multi-stakeholder process last year aimed at developing a voluntary code of conduct for mobile app transparency. Some of those that participated in the process spoke at a Global Privacy Summit preconference session Wednesday on why a multi-stakeholder process was chosen, what the code looks like and whether the process was a success. The NTIA’s John Verdi led the stakeholder process for the Department of Commerce but was quick to tell the room that the code—now in its final draft after 142 earlier versions, 19 of which became public—is not a government product.

How Do We Stop Big Brother? We Look Back

March 6, 2014
We’re in an age of a technological tsunami. Here in the West, we’re faced with two opposing ideologies: On the left, we believe Big Brother is descending upon us via an oligarchy of faceless corporations. On the right, we believe Big Brother is descending upon us via “snooty academics and faceless bureaucrats.” The result? A civil war that has completely destroyed our political world. And the only thing that will save us is a fierce militancy that sees the watched becoming the watchers. That was the message keynote speaker David Brin posed to the sold-out crowd here at the IAPP’s Global Privacy Summit in Washington, DC, yesterday.

Proposition: EU Regulation with U.S. Penalties

March 5, 2014
Is the often abstract scholarship of privacy academics read by privacy regulators? It would seem that regulators may not have the time or inclination to read such work, but in many respects, at least on Wednesday, it was clear the answer was yes. Squeezed into a small room in the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, DC, a handful of privacy scholars met briefly with some of the world’s most influential privacy regulators to discuss the future of public policy and the role of the privacy regulator as part of “Privacy Papers for Policy Makers,” co-organized by the Future of Privacy Forum and Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, D-TX.

IAPP Brings Privacy and Freedom Back Into Print

March 4, 2014
In the late 1960s, emerging surveillance technologies such as telephone tapping, electronic eavesdropping, hidden television eye monitoring and polygraph examinations, combined with the advent of the computer, reignited public concern over the preservation of privacy. These technological advances and concerns, coupled with brilliant foresight, prompted Dr. Alan F. Westin, then a professor at Columbia University, to create what would become known as a seminal work in the information privacy field, Privacy and Freedom. Lamentably, that seminal work had been out of print for years; however, the IAPP has brought the book back into print, with a limited edition run of 1,000 hardcover copies, available for the first time at the 2014 IAPP Global Privacy Summit.

The Industry of Privacy Project: Early Insights

March 3, 2014
As the field of privacy has developed, solutions to privacy concerns have multiplied in the marketplace. Tech vendors, service providers, consultants, law firms—all have broadened and deepened the offerings they have for privacy professionals to purchase in governing data and data is becoming a company’s most valuable asset. Privacy is a dynamic industry that has moved quickly, so quickly that few have stopped to take stock in how far the industry has come, and perhaps more importantly, what the industry has become. The IAPP Industry of Privacy Study seeks to do just that.

Podesta: Big Data Means Big Gains … and Risks

March 3, 2014
The White House remains committed to an open, reliable Internet but understands it requires the application of “timeless privacy values to this technology” as has been applied to each generational shift in modes of communication, from the telephone to e-mail. That was part of the message from White House Counselor John Podesta in his keynote address at MIT’s event, “Big Data Privacy: Advancing the State of Art in Technology and Practice.”

For Infosec Professionals, Privacy Can Be a Differentiator

February 28, 2014
For information security professionals, privacy might seem like a secondary thought. Done right, however, incorporating strategic thinking about privacy into daily job functions could be an infosec professional’s ticket to the C-suite—or at least strong relationships with the people in it. After all, breaches and other gaffes are expensive and damaging, and information-security professionals are the data keepers who can avoid such pitfalls. That was the message IAPP CTO Jeff Northrop, CIPP/US, CIPP/IT, told a crowd at the RSA breakout session “Privacy as a Growing Risk.”

OWASP Looking for Volunteers for Privacy Top 10 Project

February 28, 2014
In the cybersecurity community, the OWASP Top 10 Project is something of a touchstone. An open-source list of “the most critical web application security flaws,” it represents a consensus of experts as to what threats organizations should be most concerned with as they go about developing their projects. Florian Stahl, CIPP/IT, has launched the OWASP Top 10 Privacy Risks Project, and he’s looking for help.

RSA Dispatch: Talking FIPPs and Geeks with Google, Microsoft and McAfee

February 27, 2014
These are uncertain times. User trust is at an all-time low; the models upon which governing data-use principles were built are outdated, and it’s time for a shift in how policy people and engineers work together in order to address these problems. This report examines those and other takeaways from a well-attended and wide-ranging RSA session Wednesday on “Hot Topics in Privacy,” moderated by IAPP CEO Trevor Hughes, CIPP< and featuring a panel of chief privacy officers from Google, Microsoft and McAfee.

Introducing the Casebook of FTC Privacy Law

February 27, 2014
The IAPP Westin Research Center has undertaken a project to produce an FTC Privacy Casebook—which collates, organizes, indexes, tags and annotates the body of FTC privacy and data security jurisprudence—and make it available for you to search and use. The IAPP believes that the FTC Privacy Casebook will be a useful resource for businesses that seek to comply with the law and best data practices but often find themselves groping for guidance and direction. Ahead of the largest ever (yet again) IAPP Global Privacy Summit in Washington, DC, next week, the IAPP Westin Research Center has published a useful preview of the FTC Privacy Casebook, which is scheduled for launch at the end of the year.

NTIA’s Facial Recognition Talks Trigger Debate

February 26, 2014
In the second in a series of meetings to develop a voluntary code of conduct around the application of facial recognition technology, the scope of the code was debated. Led by the National Telecommunications and Internet Administration’s (NTIA) John Verdi, the talks centered around whether or not there should be a dual use structure for facial recognition’s commercial and government use; specifics on how the technology actually works and links with databases, and how much more time should be spent fact finding on facial recognition.

Cryptographers at RSA: “Users Seem To Now Mind Giving Up Privacy”

February 26, 2014
At this year’s RSA conference in San Francisco, CA, keynote panelists Whitfield Diffie of SafeLogic, Brian LaMacchia of Microsoft Research, Paul Kocher of Cryptography Research, Inc., MIT’s Ronald Rivest and Adi Shamir of Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science expressed “shame” and “shock” at the NSA revelations but also offered up a vision of where cryptography is going and how it might affect the privacy industry.

If Gov’t Won’t Protect Privacy, Innovation Will

February 26, 2014
Former Navy Seal Mike Janke, now CEO of year-old private-communications service Silent Circle, talked about the “Summer of Snowden” revelations during an RSA 2014 session entitled, “Mission Impossible? Building and Defending Zero-Knowledge Privacy Services.” Joined by Ethan Oberman of cloud-based synchronization and sharing service SpiderOak and Nicko van Someren, CTO of Good Technology, Janke and company discussed the new premium on “zero-knowledge” technology models that allow users to maintain complete control of their data access and new technological solutions for privacy. The Privacy Advisor Editor Angelique Carson, CIPP/US, brings you the highlights.

The Lasting Effects of World War I on Privacy Today

February 25, 2014
One-hundred years ago, World War I, originating from a complex web of interactions, aspirations and illusions, commenced as a struggle that would lead to the deaths of tens of millions of people. But the war would also lead to changes in the understanding and rules for freedom of expression, security and privacy. Thomas Shaw, CIPP/US, looks at court rulings then that still impact U.S. views on privacy today.

Proposal: Use Oil Spill Remedies on Data Breach Problem

February 25, 2014
After the string of data breaches that affected Target, Neiman Marcus and other retailers, the security vulnerability of Big Data has come under scrutiny. The proliferation of data breaches also has banks, retailers, credit card companies, regulators and others all asking one question: How do we solve the data breach problem? At the Maine Law Review 2014 Privacy Symposium, Capital University Law Prof. Dennis Hirsch suggested looking to environmental law to find an answer. IAPP Westin Fellow Dennis Holmes evaluates two of his major suggestions.

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