Obama’s privacy and cyber bills are the GOP’s first big test at governing

Brian Fung, Washington Post,  Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Passing the president's initiatives should be relatively straightforward, analysts say. Obama wants Congress to develop a national standard for data breaches, telling companies how quickly they need to disclose a leak of customer data in the event of a hack. He's also proposed a bill that would keep students' electronic data — generated by educational apps and devices — out of the hands of some commercial entities.

White House to Propose Consumer Cybersecurity Measures

Byron Tau, Wall Street Journal,  Monday, January 12, 2015

President Barack Obama will announce a handful of new consumer cybersecurity proposals on Monday, citing the growing threat of identity theft, data breaches and online fraud to Americans.In a speech at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington, Mr. Obama will unveil two legislative proposals designed to protect consumers’ personal and financial information, as well as the privacy ofstudent data collected by schools and corporations. “Recent polls show that nine in 10 Americans feel they have in some way lost control of their personal information—and that can lead to less interaction with technology, less innovation, and a less productive economy,” the White House said in a statement. The proposals, which would outline corporate responsibilities in the event of a data breach and curtail companies’ ability to sell student data or advertise to students, will need a vote from Congress.

At CES, privacy is a growing business

Hayley Tsukayama, Washington Post,  Thursday, January 08, 2015

This is the first year that privacy-focused products have had their own part of the floor, which itself may be taken as evidence that privacy, particularly on mobile devices, is something that everyone should be thinking about.

Right to be forgotten? That’s not Google’s call – data MEP Albrecht

Jennifer Baker, The Register,  Thursday, January 08, 2015

Even though changes to Europe’s data protection laws would not substantially alter the right to deletion or erasure, perhaps Google shouldn’t be making such calls on its own, according to Jan Philipp Albrecht, a leading data protection MEP. Last May, Google was ordered to remove links to “outdated or irrelevant” information about individuals by the European Court of Justice, the so-called right to be forgotten. At the time the decision provoked surprise, in particular since it went contrary to the ECJ’s own advocate general’s opinion.

Google may bring auto insurance shopping service to US

Steven Musil, CNET,  Thursday, January 08, 2015

Google may finally be ready to launch its auto insurance comparison shopping service in the US, according to an industry analyst. A review of state insurance commission filings by Forrester Research analyst Ellen Carney discovered that an entity doing business under the name Google Compare Auto Insurance Services is licensed to do business in more than half the US...

FTC Chairwoman Notes Concerns Raised by Connected Devices

,  Tuesday, January 06, 2015

The head of the Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday offered a prescription for protecting consumer data collected by Internet-connected gadgets like wearable fitness trackers and “smart home” devices, previewing themes of a coming report by the agency on Internet privacy and security. She also said that technology companies should be more transparent about the way they use personal data and should simplify their terms of use.

Drones, Privacy: Legislative Issues Reflect Changing Times

Daniela Altimari, The Hartford Courant,  Monday, December 22, 2014

From protecting student privacy from firms seeking to access a burgeoning trove of educational data to regulating smartphone-based car services such as Uber to a bold future of drones and driverless cars, the General Assembly could be asked to craft public policy on concepts that scarcely existed a few years ago.

Amazon's cloud business a harder sell in post-Snowden era

Deepa Seetharaman and Bill Rigby, Reuters,  Friday, December 19, 2014

Since Edward Snowden exposed the vast reach of the U.S. National Security Agency's surveillance programs 18 months ago, government agencies and companies around the world have been evaluating where they keep their most sensitive data. Some larger companies have grown wary of relying too heavily on Amazon's public cloud servers, preferring to store data on their own premises or work with cloud providers that can offer them the option of dedicated servers - the so-called "private cloud" model, technology consultants say. That has opened a door for rivals such as Microsoft Corp , which has won over some companies by giving them more direct oversight of their data in the cloud.

The Future of Privacy

Lee Rainie and Janna Anderson, Pew Research,  Thursday, December 18, 2014

An information science professional responded, “Individuals are willing to give up privacy for the reasons of ease, fastness, and convenience… If anything, consumer tracking will increase, and almost all data entered online will be considered ‘fair game’ for purposes of analytics and producing ‘user-driven’ ads. Privacy is an archaic term when used in reference to depositing information online.

Wanted: An International Rule of Law for Cloud Data

Michael Chertoff by Michael Chertoff, Chertoff Group
Thursday, December 18, 2014

If we don’t figure out a new way of resolving legal conflicts, the universal Web as we know it may soon be Balkanized. Global companies will be subject to competing and inconsistent legal demands—one country may require disclosure of information that another country prohibits from being disclosed. The inevitable result will be that consumers suffer diminished access to the network overall. Decisions companies make about the location of their servers and hardware will be driven by legal gamesmanship rather than by technological or infrastructure considerations. The current free-for-all of competing nations needs to be replaced with an agreed-upon international system for newly designed choice-of-law rules for data in the Internet cloud. Such rules determine which country’s law governs in a dispute, as when we try to decide whose law governs a contract for the sale of goods. We need to harmonize existing rules in a framework of law for the cyber age.