Privacy ranked as one of the top areas in which CXOs plan to invest following the COVID-19 pandemic, according to research conducted by Constellation Research. While the public health crisis and responses like contact tracing have tested limits on individuals’ right to privacy, Constellation advises organisations that “protecting client privacy builds trust in today’s chaotic and apocalyptic environment”.
New regulations from the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office and US states could threaten retail marketing techniques such as personalisation and real-time bidding, according to Forrester analysts. Retailers must respond to these regulations and minimise poor data ethics around user behaviour and biometric data to build customer trust and loyalty, they say.
The rise of remote working during the COVID-19 pandemic meant a surge in usage of Zoom’s videoconferencing software. After being widely criticised for not encrypting communications on the free version of its software, the company announced it would offer AES 256 GCM – “one of the strongest encryption standards in use today” – for all Zoom users.
Privacy and disinformation are among the top short-term risks for organisations to manage over the next 10 years, according to Frost & Sullivan. By taking a global approach and thinking beyond current privacy standards, organisations can find opportunities for growth instead of risking potential damage from abusing individuals’ privacy.
Because of reduced IT spend and weak economic growth as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, IDC predicts worldwide spending on blockchain solutions will hit $4.3 billion in 2020, up 57 per cent from $2.7 billion in 2019. This prediction is 7.7 per cent lower than forecasts made before the pandemic. Hospitality, transportation, personal and consumer services, and construction will be the hardest-hit sectors.
A new independent study conducted by the Blockchain and Digital Currency team in the World Economic Forum Centre is investigating whether the use of blockchain and cryptocurrency technologies could help fight corruption in world governments. In particular, it looks at how the technology could increase transparency and fairness in vendor selection for the public procurement process.
Contact tracing applications that monitor those who have come in contact with an infected individual could help slow the spread of COVID-19 – but they also raise privacy concerns over sharing personal location data. A study from researchers at the University of California, Irvine, shows how to create a ‘track-and-trace’ smartphone app that keeps user data anonymous, thus encouraging widespread usage of such apps to fight coronavirus and other infectious diseases.
Organisations affected by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) should embrace the proper management of individuals’ data rights, says a report from the Digital Clarity Group. Giving customers control over how their data is used “encourages them to provide more and richer data that informs ever more effective experiences”, it argues.
How can organisations protect customer data even as governments track individuals’ movements to stop the spread of COVID-19? Gartner offers advice on proper data ethics, including collaborating with others in making data-sharing decisions, continually evaluating any temporary measures and reviewing how you share data.
A new law proposed in the US Congress calls for law enforcement – including the FBI and local and state police forces – to stop using facial recognition technology because it poses a threat to personal privacy. The legislation would place a moratorium on facial recognition and prevent police forces using the technology from receiving federal funds.
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