What to Read on Data Privacy: 3 Recommendations That Offer Solutions

Because data breach reports, identity theft stories, and cyberattack articles are easy to find and upsetting to read, we’ve compiled a quick list of three very different reading recommendations, that all offer solutions to mainstream data privacy issues that are burdening Americans today: a government report, an article published in the Harvard Business Review, and a company white paper describing the technology platform we use for Private.me.

1. Privacy Is a Business Opportunity

This Harvard Business Review Article was written by David Hoffman, Director of Security Policy and Global Privacy Officer at Intel Corporation in April, 2014. In the article, Hoffman describes clearly, what our team internally talks about everyday while developing Private.me. He writes “privacy protection should be a practice as fundamental to the business as customer service.” This article offers a great perspective (one we are fully behind) with concrete examples and valuable suggestions for how businesses and consumers can both benefit when companies treat data privacy as a business opportunity.

2. Data Brokers: A Call for Transparency and Accountability

In May 2014, the Federal Trade Commission published this report, which resulted from an an in-depth study of nine U.S. data brokers. The report addresses current issues relating to the way personal data is being collected, shared and used in the data broker industry. Also in the report, the FTC makes a recommendation, urging Congress to consider enacting legislation that would make data broker practices more transparent to consumers. Key findings noted in the report include:

  • Data Brokers Collect Consumer Data from Numerous Sources, Largely Without Consumers’ Knowledge
  • The Data Broker Industry is Complex, with Multiple Layers of Data Brokers Providing Data to Each Other
  • Data Brokers Collect and Store Billions of Data Elements Covering Nearly Every U.S. Consumer
  • Data Brokers Combine and Analyze Data About Consumers to Make Inferences About Them, Including Potentially Sensitive Inferences
  • Data Brokers Combine Online and Offline Data to Market to Consumers Online

3. The Standard Clouds, Inc. white paper

This white paper, published in May 2014 by Standard Clouds, Inc., describes the patent pending technology platform used by Private.me. The white paper outlines how the use of technology – and more specifically, the unique method of data encryption, distribution and storage being commercialized by Standard Clouds Inc. – is creating a new environment and online ecosystem, where individuals can control and manage access to their personal data.

 

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We’ve Launched In Public Beta!

We’re thrilled to have launched today! Here’s the press release announcing our news.

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Internet users concerned with privacy, cyber crime, and unauthorized data collection can now take control of their personal information with Private.me, which launched today. Private.me is a secure hub of online privacy tools that keeps an individual’s personal data private through a patent-pending process that encrypts and fragments users’ data, and then distributes it to a geographically dispersed system of servers. This system prevents user data from being accessed by third party marketers or any unauthorized data collectors.

Private.me gives individuals authority over their personal data, putting them in the privileged position of controlling when, how, and by whom their information can be accessed. A simple dashboard lets individuals set and change their access permissions. The solution ensures that no single entity can access a user’s personal information without the user’s explicit consent.

“Private.me is a first-of-its-kind platform that captures search data and ensures that it is never available to any other person or company, unless the user gives authorization,” said Dr. Stan Stahl, Chief Information Security Officer for Private.me. “The site is designed to put control over who can access data, and how they can use it, into the hands of individual consumers, who are the people who care most about safe and responsible handling of their information.”

Stahl, a cyber-security expert whose thirty-five years’ experience includes securing White House teleconferencing and nuclear missile communication networks, works with a prestigious team of Private.me experts, which is addressing the most pernicious privacy infringements plaguing Internet users today.

Individuals can access Private.me’s flagship privacy solution, a free Internet search service, through a search bar on the company’s homepage. The search experience on Private.me is unique among existing search anonymizers, because a user can save and access their search history, keeping the information they want for their personal use.

“Internet users will be able to delete their search history, or retain it for convenience, in case they want to repeat the search,” said Stahl. “By default, the search always remains private, and the user’s search data will not be captured, kept, or sold without the user’s permission, ever.”

In the future, Private.me will partner with companies that want to use the technology to minimize their data-handling liabilities, and provide added privacy control options to their customers.

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