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Thursday, January 28, 2010

FTC Privacy Workshop: Summary of Harbour & Vladeck Remarks
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I'm attending the FTC's 2nd "Exploring Privacy" roundtable event, which is taking place at the University of California-Berkeley School of Law. Here's the agenda. (I'll be live Tweeting @AdamThierer). FTC Commissioner Pamela Jones Harbour & FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection Director David Vladeck kicked things off. Here's a quick summary of their remarks:

  • Data collection has vast opportunities but drawbacks also

  • "non-price dimensions" of privacy important

  • Talking about recent Facebook privacy changes

  • Privacy is not "over" as McNealy once said; recent public outcry about Facebook changes make that clear

  • "delicate balance" between data collection and consumer control

  • Concerned about privacy in the mobile environment

  • "Apple could do more to require baseline level of privacy disclosures"; other could set such defaults too

  • Similar fears about privacy in the cloud; difficult for consumers to define privacy expectation in the cloud; fear of lock-in concerns

  • Wants more data portability

  • Concerned that anonymization doesn't work good enough; Perhaps our faith in current technologies is misplaced

  • Must address the question of privacy by design sooner rather than later

David Vladeck, Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection, FTC

  • Discusses lessons from FTC December workshop...

  • Consumers have little understanding of data collection practices, both offline & online

  • Privacy policies written by lawyers not effective communications tools for consumers

  • Consumers uncomfortable with behavior advertising

  • AdBlock Plus is most popular Firefox download

  • #1 most emailed article on New York Times recently was about how consumers can protect privacy on Facebook

  • We should encourage more technological innovation to empower people to do what they want to do and learn about data

  • Technology raises public policy concerns, however

  • "a troubling technological arms race" between consumer empowerment tools and technologies that allow greater data collection

  • New concerns about social networking, mobile environment, location-based services;

  • How well do disclosure policies work on small mobile screens?

  • Need to bake-in privacy upfront

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:24 PM | Advertising & Marketing , Privacy

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