The notion of informational self-determination seems to be collapsing under the weight, diversity and volume of “Big Data” processing in the modern Information Era. Understood as an individual’s ability to exercise a measure of control over the use of his or her personal information by others, it is the basis for many privacy laws, codes of practice, and articulations of Fair Information Practice principles – especially the individual participation principles of informed consent, access, and redress.
Privacy by Design (PbD) is an approach to protecting privacy by embedding it into the design specifications of information technologies, accountable business practices, and networked infrastructures, right from the outset. It was developed by Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner, Dr. Ann Cavoukian, in the 1990s, as a response to the growing threats to online privacy that were beginning to emerge at that time.
Ninety per cent of the data in the world today was created in the last two years. It has been remarked, for example, that “[t]here was 5 exabytes of information created between the dawn of civilization through 2003, but that much information is now created every two days, and the pace is increasing.”
Privacy by Design is a concept that is virally spreading around the globe. The powerful concept of engineering privacy directly into the design of new technologies, business practices and networked infrastructure, in order to achieve the doubly-enabled pairing of functionality and privacy, has gained significant adoption by governments, researchers and industry, in any number of sectors.