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(Mar 27, 2015) In what some are calling a landmark decision, the UK Court of Appeals has ruled that a group of claimants have the right to sue Google for bypassing the privacy settings on the Safari browser to install cookies to track clicks online, BBC News reports. Google said it is “disappointed with the court’s decision,” while one of the claimants described it as a “David and Goliath victory.” In its judgement, the UK court said, “These claims raise serious issues which merit a trial.” According to the report, the ruling “potentially opens the door to litigation from the millions of Britons who used Apple” products during the time in question. Read More

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Monitoring Third-Party Vendors: Managing Your Own Risk

(Mar 27, 2015) In chapter seven of this ongoing series for The Privacy Advisor on the elements of a successful vendor-management program, K Royal, CIPP/E, CIPP/US, discusses the stage in the third-party vendor process in which the chosen vendor has been contracted and the spend has been made. That's not where diligence ends, however. Now it's time to make some management decisions, like the timing and frequency, scope and level of monitoring and who'll be responsible for that. In this report, Royal includes advice from TRUSTe's Debra Farber, CIPP/US, CIPM, CIPT. If you missed the earlier installments in the series, you can find them here at the IAPP Resource Center. Read More

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Officials Discuss Ending FTC “Common Carrier” Exemption

(Mar 27, 2015) The Washington Post reports federal officials are discussing ways to end a law that prohibits the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) from regulating “common carriers.” Under the new net neutrality order by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Internet service providers (ISPs) and telecommunications companies would be considered utilities, or common carriers. By removing the exemption, both agencies would have more power to regulate the industry. On Wednesday, FTC Commissioner Terrell McSween... Read More

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NSTIC Announces Privacy Pilot Funding

(Mar 27, 2015) The National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) National Program Office has announced a new funding opportunity with a focus on privacy enhancing technologies. “NSTIC is soliciting applications from eligible applicants to pilot privacy-enhancing technologies that embrace and advance the NSTIC vision and contribute to the maturity of the Identity Ecosystem the NSTIC envisions: Promote secure, privacy-enhancing and user-friendly ways to give individuals and organizations convenience in their online interactions,” the NSTIC announcement states. The new privacy pilot program awards are expected to range from approximately $750,000 to $1.5 million per year for up to two years. The deadline to apply is May 28. Read More

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UN Appoints Special Digital Privacy Investigator

(Mar 27, 2015) PCWorld reports that the Human Rights Council of the United Nations has resolved to appoint an independent investigator—or “special rapporteur”—to monitor privacy in the Digital Age. The council said that while online, people must have the same rights they do offline. The move, strongly backed by the governments of Brazil and Germany, is thought to be more of a symbolic appointment because the investigator will serve as an advisor. “Our hope is that the Human Rights Council resolution marks the beginning of a serious global reckoning with mass surveillance and its effects,” said Human Rights Watch Director of Global Affairs Eileen Donahoe. Read More

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Cybersecurity Bills Move Forward Despite Privacy Concerns

(Mar 27, 2015) Wired reports privacy concerns could not stop a Senate committee’s passage of the proposed Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act or a House committee “from following in the Senate’s surveillance-friendly footsteps. “ The House Intelligence Committee has passed the Protecting Cyber Networks Act (PCNA), “a near-mirror image of the cybersecurity data-sharing bill known as CISA that the Senate intelligence committee passed two weeks ago,” the report states, noting the PCNA and CISA “would create new legal authorizations for companies to share cybersecurity threat information with government agencies,” and critics contend both versions “have pretty much nonexistent privacy protections, along with new powers to spy on and monitor users … all while being provided broad immunity.” Read More

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Will Digital Privacy Law Stymie Innovation?

(Mar 27, 2015) Laws aimed at protecting students must strike a “balance between safety and growth—between isolation and discovery,” NetChoice Senior Policy Counsel Carl Szabo, CIPP/US, writes for The Hill. However, he suggests, “the Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act (SDPPRA) of 2015 misses this balance.” SDPPRA’s “overly proscriptive language” results in “shackling educational innovation.” With the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act undergoing an update and the recent overhaul of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, Szabo questions, “With all these laws already on the books to protect student information, what’s the value of the SDPPRA?” His answer? “Very little.” Read More

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R-CISC Announces Threat-Sharing Portal

(Mar 27, 2015) The Retail Cyber Intelligence Sharing Center (R-CISC) has announced a new portal to share cybersecurity threats as part of “its effort to curb data hacks,” Associations Now reports. R-CISC is a partnership of major retail outlets and is spearheaded by the Retail Industry Leaders Association, the report states, and the portal “takes advantage of existing capabilities already offered through the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center.” Through the portal, member organizations will have the ability “to more efficiently share and contextualize information about cyber-threats with banks, federal authorities such as the FBI and Secret Service and other stakeholders,” the report states. Read More

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Yakobovich on the Power of Surveillance for Good

(Mar 26, 2015) Videre founder Oren Yakobovich is a former Israeli soldier who decided, upon service, that he was more interested in "breaking the traditional power structures between citizens and government" by empowering oppressed people through the use of video documentation. By quite literally watching the watchers, civil rights abuses have been documented and change has been enacted. He used his keynote address at the IAPP Global Privacy Summit to talk about his efforts and explore the ways in which surveillance can be a force for good. Read More

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With Tech and Democracy, Will Privacy Survive?

(Mar 26, 2015) Last month, the University of California-Hastings held a conference with tech leaders, CEOs and federal regulators to discuss how best to use technology in the democratic process. “The Future of Technology & Democracy” conference included several technologists—including from Google, Facebook and Twitter—to educate and inform representatives from the Federal Elections Commission and the Federal Communications Commission. “Significantly,” writes Prof. Timothy Yim, CIPP/US, CIPM, CI... Read More

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