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National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace

Privacy Workshop

June 27-28, 2011 / MIT Media Lab / Boston, Mass.

By Bill Densmore

Hash tags: #nstic.mit #nstic

SPEAKER: Keynote and host -- Sandy Pentland, MIT Media Lab

Keynote speaker Alex “Sandy” Pentland, former head of the Media Lab. He is pioneer of the mobile social web:

“Personal data is the new oil of the internet and the new currency of the diital world.” Meglena Kuneva, European Consumer Commissioner.

Telcoms have to collect personal data to make money. “They see this as their way forward. …. Most large media companies see this as their route back to profitability.”

In two years there will be 200 million medicial devices on and inside people, according to executive at Qualcomm.

“All the private data about people coming through one channel . . . that’s the real point of pain here . . . do not be distracted by Facebook or Google.”

SPEAKER: Jeremy Grant: Personal data: The emergence of a new asset class

“The only people you can trust with this data, are the people themselves. People have to have ownership of their data,” he says. So how do you promote ownership of personal data by the people themselves. Key is to think if data as valuable.

“Companies are willing to do this, because if they give you a copy of your data . . . you have the ability to use it in whatever value-producing way you choose.”

  • Privacy-enhancing and voluntary -- user choice of providers
  • Secure and resilient
  • Interoperabie
  • Cost-effective and easy to use

What problems are sought to be solved?

  • User names and passwords are broken
  • Identity-theft costs are rising – 11.7M victims, $17.3B cost over two years
  • Cybercrime is also on the rise
  • Goal: By Jan. 1, 2016 – an identity ecosystem that is interoperable.

Grant says government wants to lead a private sector effort but will not develop an infrastructure itself – rather will collaborate and use private solutions. He quotes President Obama as saying the idea is to not force anyone to give up the anonymity they enjoy on the web if they wish to be anonymous.

Grant: “Government will paricipate in this group … but it does not mean we will lead this effort.” Government wants to advocate for and protect individuals. A June 8 notice of inquiry is due July 22, focused on steering group structure, initiation, representation of stakeholders and international considerations.

They hope to get ideas, lessons and input from stakeholders. Submissions are part of the public record and there will be a public report with recommendatiosn fr addressing, at a minimum, questions raised on the four key issues.

Grant: A few words about privacy

  • Enhancement of privacy a guiding principle
  • Minimum information required to be shared is the idea
  • Preserve positive privacy benefits of offline transactions, mitigate bad aspects