Public Showing Increased Concern Regarding Their Data

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jemand hatte ...by Angela Guess

Leo King of Forbes recently wrote, “Serious concerns are being raised over the ‘gold rush’ for citizen data by the U.K. government and its private sector partners. While the government uses unidentifiable data for good purposes such as analyzing disease or crime patterns, it often rushes to sell data on members of the public before proper principles and trust are established, data experts have told Forbes. This week, it was reported in the Times newspaper that Google  has pulled out of a deal to include data from the NHS, the U.K.’s public healthcare system, within its search results. Data provision would have gone ahead under Care.data – an NHS plan to sell patient data sets to a range of companies, which led to a data privacy outcry. Google said more debate was needed. In a separate incident, the British government has been heavily criticized in an official review for effectively selling the control over public address data to private shareholders during the flotation of Royal Mail.”

King continues, “The public sector, as with businesses, is ‘caught up in a big data gold rush’, says Mark Little, principal analyst at Ovum, in spite of some good intentions to benefit society and the economy. ‘Both the Royal Mail and the NHS appear to be rushing to deliver the socio economic value, running before they can walk.’ Data protection is improving in a number of areas, Little says, but organizations need to do ‘far more sophisticated work’ around core project principles, security and public consultation. Georgina O’Toole, a director at TechMarketView, says there is plenty of potential for anonymous data to be used to help spot issues such as geographical patterns in the occurrence of certain diseases, and good work is being done in these areas for real public benefit. ‘The issue is whether citizens trust the government to ensure their own personal data is kept safe,’ she says.”

Read more here.

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