Archive for the ‘Privacy’ Category

A Positive Step in the Encryption Debate

posted by in Cybersecurity, Privacy December 21, 2016

The members of the House Encryption Working Group took on a seemingly impossible task this year when they set out to bridge the gap between the two sides of this noisy and difficult debate. That makes the result of their work – a series of balanced findings that summarizes their careful consideration of these issues – that much more important.

All sides should thank them for it, and we should pledge to work together toward responsible solutions in the next Congress.

As the Working Group notes, encryption plays a crucial role in securing the data of all Americans in our increasingly digital lives. Legislative mandates that undermine the technology would only serve to make everyone less secure. At the same time, the report recognizes – and BSA strongly supports – the important work of law enforcement in protecting our safety and pursuing criminals. To help investigators and prosecutors do their jobs, it will be important to examine new efforts at cooperation between law enforcement and the technology community and to consider new investigative tools and techniques.

The Working Group’s report is the culmination of months’ worth of work by a bipartisan group from the Energy and Commerce Judiciary committees. BSA appreciates their efforts, and we urge Congress to build on the Working Group’s thoughtful report by engaging in a broad dialogue that continues to examine all facets of the encryption debate.

We shouldn’t understate the difficult path that lies ahead. Addressing these concerns while maintaining the greatest possible security will not be an easy task. But with all sides working together, we can develop policies that ensure users the strongest possible digital security and provide law enforcement with the tools they need to keep us safe. BSA looks forward to working with Congress to finding workable solutions that protect security for everyone.

It’s Time to Move the Encryption Discussion Forward

posted by in Cybersecurity, Data, Privacy November 15, 2016

Encryption Principles Art
The encryption discussion in Washington has been locked in a polarized stalemate for months — with loud voices on distant ends deeply dug in.

Encryption is a complex issue that affects a range of global stakeholders, from governments to businesses to individuals. The ideal solution needs to consider all legitimate sides of the argument and can only be achieved through open dialogue. It is time for this stalemate to end.

To move the conversation forward, BSA | The Software Alliance has developed a set of Encryption Principles, to be used by governments around the world to evaluate proposals on encryption in a balanced way. These principles frame a comprehensive approach to address the important needs of global cybersecurity, public safety, and personal privacy and prosperity.
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Privacy Shield Attracts Strong Company Support

posted by in Data, Privacy August 1, 2016

BSA President & CEO Victoria Espinel penned the op-ed below that ran earlier today in The Hill. As she notes, today is the first day that companies can certify with the Commerce Department for the Privacy Shield.

Why are data transfers across the Atlantic so important? Cloud computing services and data analytics increasingly depend on the ability to move data across borders. And these services dramatically improve the efficiency and competitiveness of businesses large and small. They also improve our cybersecurity defenses. If data has to stop at national borders, the benefits of cloud computing will be greatly reduced, and the economies on both sides of the Atlantic will suffer as a result.

BSA thanks the US Department of Commerce and the European Commission for their hard work and successful completion of the Privacy Shield.

Privacy Shield Attracts Strong Company Support

August 1 marks the beginning of a more stable and secure era for trans-Atlantic data transfers. That’s the day Privacy Shield, a new agreement between the United States and the European Union, takes effect. And it’s off to a good start, with a number of major companies already announcing that they will join, and many others favorably considering participation in the new framework.
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Privacy Shield Marks a Promising Step Forward – Not the End of the Road – on Privacy

posted by in Privacy July 14, 2016

When you think about how the internet operates, you probably think about “how many bars” you have and making sure your device has a charge strong enough to last the day. Perhaps you think about software and data. What you might not think about are obscure agreements on paper or Congress’s everlasting arguments on privacy.

And yet those details are vital to the operation of the internet. They create the legal framework that allows the technical components to all work together. In short, it takes paper pacts to keep the data flowing and the LEDs lit.

That’s why this week’s signing of a new agreement between the United States and the European Union should be a cause for major celebration as well as a time to acknowledge the real work that remains to be done to support cross-border data flows.

As for this week’s development, the new EU-US Privacy Shield, finalized in a meeting between EU Commissioner Vera Jourova and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, is indispensable to the future of digital commerce. The Privacy Shield will allow US and European companies to send data back and forth across the Atlantic.
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Is It Time to Pop the Champagne for ECPA?

posted by in Cybersecurity, Data, Privacy April 26, 2016

It generally isn’t a good idea to celebrate before a vote in Congress. But it also isn’t generally the case that the House is voting on a measure that is sponsored by nearly three-quarters of its Members. That is the situation this week, with a vote coming on the Email Privacy Act — a bill sponsored by a staggering 314 Representatives.

And those circumstances are why this time perhaps it’s worth celebrating — just a bit — this big step for privacy even before votes are cast.
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Progress in Building Trust in Trans-Atlantic Data Flows

posted by in Data, Global Markets, Privacy February 11, 2016

Last night, the US House passed the Senate-amended version of the Judicial Redress Act, now headed to President Obama for signature. Progress on this front matters. This needed legislation will form a critical part of a stable and trustworthy structure for free flow of data across borders – so essential for economic growth in our digital economy.

Following last week’s agreement between the United States and European Union on the Privacy Shield, a successor to the Safe Harbor Framework as a mechanism for protecting the flow of personal information in the commercial context, enactment of the Judicial Redress Act will further harmonize US and European privacy protections as well.

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A Call for Creative Solutions

posted by in Cybersecurity, Privacy November 24, 2015

The November 13 attacks in Paris were tragic, and our hearts and thoughts are with the people of Paris. We stand ready to work with law enforcement to prevent future such horrific incidents. Such efforts will require creative solutions that benefit public safety as well as online security.

There has been a good deal of discussion in recent days suggesting that encryption is the single factor that enables terrorists. That is not the case.

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Seize the Opportunity for a Sustainable Path

posted by in Data, Privacy October 22, 2015

In “The collapse of the US-EU Safe Harbor: Solving the new privacy Rubik’s Cube,” Microsoft’s Brad Smith provides insight on ways to ensure European consumers and enterprises can continue using data services in the manner they chose and from the best providers of such services. In today’s world, it is a well-known policy truism that technology will advance much more quickly than tech-related law and that regulations can hobble both innovation and the economy. While we need to address immediate issues to address the collapse of the Safe Harbor, our future and the policy decisions which shape it require enduring and sustainable solutions.

Today, we have the opportunity to improve citizens’ lives, businesses and governments by creating a long term framework to ensure that privacy is fully respected while permitting new software technology to thrive. These solutions must be global and crafted to better fit the digital world in which we live. A failure to embrace this opportunity is a failure for us all.

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What’s the Big Deal With Data?

Plenty, according to new report from BSA | The Software Alliance

We are generating more data today than ever before – and it’s improving everything from healthcare and auto safety to education and air travel. More than 90 percent of the world’s data was created in the last two years, and we now are doubling the amount of data created every two years. Once constrained by storage capacity, there is now expected to be enough data to stack 128-gigabyte tablets from Earth to the moon 6.6 times by the end of the decade, according to a 2014 EMC Digital Universe study.

Now, our biggest challenge is figuring out what to do with all of this information and how to leverage it – and that’s where software comes into play.

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The Web Is Worldwide — Shouldn’t Privacy Protections Be Global as Well?

posted by in Data, Privacy September 16, 2015

Earlier today I testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about a critical issue that affects anyone who has ever sent an email. The Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), designed to prevent unauthorized government access to private electronic communications, is sorely in need of an update.

We are generating an enormous amount of data every day — just think: over 90 percent of the world’s data was created in the past two years — but the policy environment tied to data services has not kept pace with this technological progress. The protections for our 21st-century world of software and data services are still mired in outdated 20th-century law.

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