June 2016

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W&L Law Review Publishes First-ever Disclosure of Facebook Internal Review Process

The Facebook study was the product of a symposium sponsored by W&L Law and theFuture of Privacy Forum (FPF), a DC-based think tank that promotes responsible data privacy policies. The topic of the symposium, as the Facebook paper suggests, was ethical review processes for big data research, with an emphasis on the ethical challenges of internal corporate research by companies that are able to harvest massive amounts of digital data. The event was also supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the National Science Foundation.

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The FAA released rules for the operation of commercial drones

“Drones will bring a wide range of benefits, but for widespread acceptance, it will be essential for the public to feel comfortable that personal data collected by drone operators will be used responsibly. The drone privacy best practices provide guideposts that will help major companies and small operators alike demonstrate that they handle data in a trustworthy manner.”

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Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Traveling to the United States for Internet of Things – Transforming the Future Conference

On June 21, 2016, Samsung will host its inaugural “Internet of Things – Transforming the Future” conference at the Washington Post, during which the company will lay out its vision for a human-centered approach to the Internet of Things (IoT) that focuses on the outcomes the technology will create for people and societies across the globe.

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The emerging ethical standards for studying corporate data

Microsoft scientists, in an article published this week in the Journal of Oncology Practice, demonstrated that by analyzing large samples of search engine queries, they may, in some cases, be able to identify internet users who are suffering from pancreatic cancer, even before they have received a diagnosis of the disease.

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Examining Ethics, Privacy, and Research Reviews

Today, the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and the Ohio State University’s Program on Data and Governance are holding a discussion of ethics, privacy and practical research reviews in corporate settings. This timely event, which follows the White House’s call to develop strong data ethics frameworks, convened corporate and academic leaders to discuss how to integrate ethical and privacy considerations into innovative data projects and research.

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Advancing Knowledge Regarding Practical Solutions for De-Identification of Personal Data: A Call for Papers

De-identification of personal information plays a central role in current privacy policy, law, and practice. Yet there are deep disagreements about the efficacy of de-identification to mitigate privacy risks. Some critics argue that it is impossible to eliminate privacy harms from publicly released data using de-identification because other available data sets will allow attackers to identify individuals through linkage attacks.

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Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband and Other Telecommunications Services

The Future of Privacy Forum filed comments with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to the FCC’s proposed rules regarding the privacy and data practices of Internet Services Providers (ISPs). The FCC’s March 31, 2016 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM or Notice) seeks to regulate ISP’s data practices pursuant to Section 222 of the Communications Act – a sector-specific statute that includes detailed requirements that apply to telecommunications services, but does not apply to other services offered by broadband providers nor to online services operating at the edge of the network (e.g. web sites).

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June 22nd Webinar: PII Cookies and De-Identification – Accounting for Shades of Grey

Despite a broad consensus around the need for and value of de-identification, one of the biggest challenges in the privacy profession remains how to determine when data is, or is not, de-identified. Join us for this in-depth discussion on how and when privacy professionals, industry groups, and regulators around the world have tackled this thorny question.