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New Initiatives

Privacy organizations are at the forefront of the fight against companies and governments to protect consumer privacy. As we have seen with just a sampling of the cases and initiatives that are underway, many fronts exist that require defending by privacy organizations. There are a number of new concerns, as well as positive defenses revolving consumer information that go beyond simple things such as spam e-mail and purchased information for direct mailings.

Chief Privacy Officer

One of the most positive changes in consumer privacy has been the emergency of the chief privacy officer (CPO) position in many large corporations. The goal of the CPO is to guide a company's privacy policies and practices. The need for a privacy officer has grown rapidly over the past couple years and is the focus of attention because of the new laws that affect a company's policies regarding consumer information. Legal requirements are forcing many companies to comply or face penalties. We have discussed laws such as HIPPA and Gramm-Leach-Bliley that have definite requirements and penalties for non-compliance of protecting consumer information. Fear is also a driving factor behind the ascension of the CPO. Companies are afraid of lawsuits and laws that could affect their reputations and business practices. The CPO role is more of a policy role than an implementation of technology.


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