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Jan
28
2011

Happy Data Privacy Day!

By Fran Maier
President
TRUSTe


Today is Data Privacy Day, a “international celebration of the dignity of the individual expressed through personal information”. For privacy professionals such as myself it feels like every day is data privacy day and this week has been no exception. Earlier this week I was in Florida to attend the Mobile Marketing Association’s Consumer Best Practices Public Forum as well as the Privacy Law Salon. In honor of Data Privacy Day I gave some thought to items I think should be on every privacy professional’s checklist. Here’s what I came up with:

1. Getting on the behavioral advertising self-regulatory bandwagon
Learn more about it here.

2. Embracing alternative privacy notices
Like these.

3. Joining a privacy organization.
LIke this one.

4. Addressing mobile privacy issues
Like these ones.

5. Consideration of an online trustmark
Like the trustmark these sites use. :)

6. Providing consumers with meaningful privacy choice
Like this.

Also, Here Are Some New Year’s (Data) House Cleaning Tips:

    • Get New Passwords: Use different, strong passwords for each of your online accounts so if one is compromised the rest are safe. Strong passwords contains letters, numbers, different cases, and symbols. Check your password’s strengthhere.
    • Close Old Online Accounts: Unused online accounts are a liability. Hackers could use them to infiltrate your more important accounts . Get rid of them. If you can’t remember where you have old accounts search your email inbox with queries like “registered”, “confirm” or “your account” to find email records of old accounts.
    • Cull Your Friends List: You put a lot of information about yourself on social networks. Would you want that friend of a friend you met once, two years ago to be carrying around a physical copy of all that information? Probably not. Keep the people you know and trust. Delete the rest.
    • Go Paperless: Still receiving bank statements and doctors’ invoices by mail? You don’t need your Social Security number floating around in your trash can on the curb outside. Call your bank, doctor, credit card company etc. to find out if you can go paperless and manage your records via a secure online portal. You’ll save a tree and protect your privacy.
    • Shred Sensitive Documents: Those credit card and health savings account statements you don’t need that have been sitting in that folder in your desk? They’re a privacy liability. Get rid of them (securely, using a shredder).

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