On 27 January, Ofcom (The Office of Communications, UK’s communications regulator) released their statement on the Internet of Things. The statement is understandably much discussed in this week’s press but it fails to overshadow an equally important event for the topic: on the same day, the FTC (the Federal Trade Commission, US’s trade regulator) published their report on the issue. Given that the Internet of Things is expected to greatly impact industry and population life-style at a global level, the two documents merit a much closer reading and comparison than I can accomplish here. Continue reading Ofcom and FTC reports on the Internet of Things
As we reported back in November 2014, the CaSMa Research team visited the Web We Want Festival hosted at the London South Bank Centre on the 28th to 30th of the month, and are very excited to share with you some of the fascinating insights offered across the weekend!
Over the last couple of years concerns about privacy and control of personal data have increasingly moved from the fringes of the hacker community (e.g. Chaos Computer Club) to the mainstream, driven there by seemingly endless reports of ethically questionable treatment of personal data by (social media) companies, the introduction of increasingly powerful ‘smart’ devices that capable of deep intrusions into people’s private lives, and seemingly never ending reports of privacy invasive behaviour by spy agencies.
The EU regulatory framework for protection of personal data is undergoing major reform in order to tackle persisting differences between national data protection regimes across the EU. Additional objectives of the reform include strengthening data protection in line with its status as a fundamental right in the EU constitutional order, increasing public trust in online services, and minimising data controllers’ compliance burdens. As part of this reform the European Commission issued a proposal in 2012 for a General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which is to replace the current Data Protection Directive (Directive 95/46/EC).
As part of the continuing theme on Data Driven Innovation, Nesta published an article on their blog with the title “Striking a balance: Data protection vs. Data Driven Innovation”. In it they call for a debate for establishing the right balance between data protection and data driven innovation, to ensure that the UK economy does not suffer but also that personal data is not misused.
Learning from the mistakes of others is perhaps one of the most valuable lessons that the Samaritans Radar has offered to research communities concerned about privacy issues and the ethical treatment of social media data, from collection through to analysis.
Update to our blog item “Recommendations submitted to UN data revolution Expert Advisory Group” from October 28th. The final report from the UN Expert Advisory Group, titles “A World that Counts, mobilising the data revolution for sustainable development” was published in November 2014. While the primary focus of the report is on the potential for using rich data sources to improve local and global policy making towards achieving sustainable development, the report also acknowledges that the data revolution comes with a range of new risks.
On November 29th and 30th CaSMa will participate in the 2nd Web We Want festival at London’s Southbank Centre. CaSMa will have a stand at the Interactive Market where we will present the work we are doing to develop and promote ethical social media research.
This week’s tech news took on a bleak hue when DarkHotel articles started popping up everywhere. The story is simple: some corporate executives using hotel provided internet access have been targeted by hackers for their (presumably) juicy data. It’s been going on for years, at an international scale and it manages to reach that little paranoid spot in us that’s so easily fuelled by the general blur of tentative tech skills and fast paced IT changes. Combine this with a codename worthy of 007 and you have an instant journalistic boon.
In this week’s CaSMa blog entry I’d like to share with you my experience of a recent student workshop session that focused on perspectives and theories of privacy, designed, delivered and kindly approved for discussion in this post by Dr Dario Landa-Silva, Associate Professor in the University of Nottingham’s School of Computer Science.