The Centre for Information Policy Leadership at Hunton & Williams LLP made ten recommendations in response to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s notice of inquiry, “Information Privacy and Innovation in the Internet Economy.” The Centre’s recommendations strongly suggest that organizational accountability is the key to providing the flexibility needed to use information robustly while protecting the interest of individuals in maintaining private space in a digital age:
“The flexibility to be innovative must be conditioned on the organization’s accountability for the manner in which it uses, manage, and protects data. … To strike the appropriate balance between the value created by data use and the risk that use poses to privacy, organizations must implement privacy processes that are as dynamic as their business processes.”
The comments went on to state that accountability can only be effective for the private sector if the government is held to similar requirements with respect to its own protection and use of data.
The Centre’s ten recommendations are:
- The Department of Commerce should represent the United States in global privacy discussions;
- The Department of Commerce should continue to support development of policy frameworks that will support the global flow of data;
- The government should articulate a vision for innovation and privacy in the information economy;
- Information policy must have a home within the government;
- Both industry and government must be accountable for its use of information;
- Federal privacy law must pre-empt state law;
- Preventing harm must remain a significant feature of the U.S. approach to privacy;
- The Department of Commerce should undertake an initiative to develop privacy norms that apply to data analytics; and,
- Privacy oversight and enforcement are best carried out by regulatory agencies with authority over specified industry sectors.
View the Centre’s full response to the Department of Commerce’s notice of inquiry and supporting documents, filed June 14, 2010.