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Privacy and data protection

2015

Len Lichtenfeld, a medical doctor writing for MedpageToday opines in Len's Lens: Privacy and Personal Health Information that even health professionals might not really understand privacy and personal health issues. While health information privacy is important offline as well, the use of health exchanges add another level to privacy issues. He explains some of the different issues and complexities of health privacy.

Twitter is alerting some of its users that their accounts may have been targeted by state sponsored actors. Users are informed that ‘these actors (possibly associated with a government) may have been trying to obtain information such as email addresses, IP addresses and/or phone numbers.’ The company also notes that it is actively investigating the matter. More details here.

In an interview given to Euractiv.com on the Safe Harbour, Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, head of the French data protection authority CNIL and chair of the Article 29 Working Party (the group of data protection authorities from EU member states) stated that, after the Safe Harbour agreement was declared invalid, the mai concern now is 'not to produce in due time a Safe Harbour number two'. She underlined that, while data protection authorities are in favour of having the transatlantic data transfer maintained, this should not be at any price. Instead, a new US-EU agreement on data transfer needs to answer the arguments of the EU Court of Justice about 'the situation of European citizens' data within the United States when accessed by the American intelligence services'.

The Washington Post reports that "VTech, a Hong Kong-based company that sells baby monitors and digital learning toys such as children's tablets, has announced that the data for 5 million "customer accounts and related kids profiles worldwide" were compromised as part of a cyberattack." This and similar incidents raise concerns for privacy and child protection advocates, who draw attention to the fact that the more and more marketed high-tech toys linked to the Internet need to be accompanied by adequate security measures to prevent data breaches.

According to the National Law Review, the US Department of Justice has delayed the deadline for regulations for accessibility of private websites until 2018. The article concludes that 'businesses and other organizations should consider assessing their websites to determine whether they meet WCAG 2.0 Level AA standards and comply with relevant privacy laws'. 

According to the BBC'  Russia passes law to overrule European human rights court Russia's lower house of parliament, the Duma, has decided that Russia can overrule the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgements. This decision was released the same day that the courst published a ruling against the russian Federal Security Service over spying, for violating privacy rights.

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