Reconciling privacy and innovation in new times – Localcomm Virtual

“All human beings have three lives: public, private, and secret.”

― Gabriel García Márquez, Gabriel García Márquez: a Life


In current times, everything is blurred with the Covid 19 pandemic and the traditional lines between work, personal , family and private times or situations have been melting in the past few months.

In this session of Siinda Localcomm Virtual, privacy experts shared their views and comments on what the impact on privacy the current situation had and what were the privacy layers that needed to be discussed.

Work-from-home practices have put people overnight on video sessions, conference calls, screen share and have exposed private spheres like your living room or corner of the bedroom desktop thus blurring frontiers between professional and personal spheres.

This and the difficult boundaries of a work from home situation combined with worldwide health management threats triggers privacy issues but the latter are very often not alluded to, as outlined by Vincent Potier. James Ward backed up the fact that not only were private and professional worlds and patterns mixed, but the issue of employer/employee relations in the Covid 19 environment is also a big one, where no clear guidance are coming from governments.

Watch the session here

Vincent, James and Jurgen Weichert also agreed that public policy management has very often diluted privacy questions into the bigger public health discussion, and that the biggest issue that was raised now in terms of privacy was about the tracing or tracking apps and their intrusiveness. Perceptions differ from one country to the other, some being more reluctant to share data, others pushing more a decentralised storage of health data in apps to avoid surveillance issues and security threats or misuse.

Comparing the US vs EU situation , James insisted that the lack of a global privacy law in the US was making the situation more difficult and that companies had to adapt to both federal and state laws and regulations to make sure they were compliant. They all think that big companies working right now to get industry privacy standards in place are a very important move which will trigger adaptation from their third party vendors and counterparts who will have to adapt their privacy by design systems, operations and products.

Privacy will no wonder still be high on the regulatory discussion front but also in boardrooms and executive management discussions as consumers are getting more acquainted with privacy requirements and as the GDPR is having a resonance effect in major parts of the globe.

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