The Governance of Privacy: Policy Instruments in Global Perspective

Routledge
Free sample

This book was published in 2003.This book offers a broad and incisive analysis of the governance of privacy protection with regard to personal information in contemporary advanced industrial states. Based on research across many countries, it discusses the goals of privacy protection policy and the changing discourse surrounding the privacy issue, concerning risk, trust and social values. It analyzes at length the contemporary policy instruments that together comprise the inventory of possible solutions to the problem of privacy protection. It argues that privacy protection depends upon an integration of these instruments, but that any country's efforts are inescapably linked with the actions of others that operate outside its borders. The book concludes that, in a ’globalizing’ world, this regulatory interdependence could lead either to a search for the highest possible standard of privacy protection, or to competitive deregulation, or to a more complex outcome reflecting the nature of the issue and its policy responses.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
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Published on
Nov 1, 2017
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Pages
272
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ISBN
9781351775472
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Language
English
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Genres
Political Science / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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The United States is not a police state, but Congress is subject to special interests lobbying in pursuit of abusive commercial practices that leave a lot to be desired for transparency and accountability. It is illegal to data-mine personal files held by government agencies, schools and universities, or medical facilities. It is illegal to collect and publish defamatory gossip and hearsay about private citizens. But it is legal to oblige Americans to “waive” their rights to privacy and their right to sue for invasion of privacy for defamation by anonymous third-parties in order to receive essential services or apply for employment.

Americans are obliged to “waive” their rights in essentially all applications for employment, credit, housing, public utilities, telephone or mobile phone service, internet access, and even cable TV connection. The law requires “notice and consent” whenever such waivers are included in employment applications, but consumer reporting agencies have learned to use deceptive methods to avoid drawing the attention of applicants to the meaning and consequence of such language. Recent law dispenses with “notice and consent” for private-eye quasi-criminal investigations of “suspected misconduct” by an employee altogether. In effect, this bypasses "probable cause," "innocent until proven guilty," the "right to know the nature of an accusation," the "right to confront witnesses," the "rule against double jeopardy," and the "right to sue for defamation, and/or interference with employment." Orlan Lee questions the validity of any such "waivers," and seeks to alert Americans to the need to protect their fundamental rights.
An analysis of the people and groups who have emerged to challenge the increasingly intrusive ways personal information is captured, processed, and disseminated.

Today, personal information is captured, processed, and disseminated in a bewildering variety of ways, and through increasingly sophisticated, miniaturized, and distributed technologies: identity cards, biometrics, video surveillance, the use of cookies and spyware by Web sites, data mining and profiling, and many others. In The Privacy Advocates, Colin Bennett analyzes the people and groups around the world who have risen to challenge the most intrusive surveillance practices by both government and corporations. Bennett describes a network of self-identified privacy advocates who have emerged from civil society—without official sanction and with few resources, but surprisingly influential. A number of high-profile conflicts in recent years have brought this international advocacy movement more sharply into focus. Bennett is the first to examine privacy and surveillance not from a legal, political, or technical perspective but from the viewpoint of these independent activists who have found creative ways to affect policy and practice. Drawing on extensive interviews with key informants in the movement, he examines how they frame the issue and how they organize, who they are and what strategies they use. He also presents a series of case studies that illustrate how effective their efforts have been, including conflicts over key-escrow encryption (which allows the government to read encrypted messages), online advertising through third-party cookies that track users across different Web sites, and online authentication mechanisms such as the short-lived Microsoft Passport. Finally, Bennett considers how the loose coalitions of the privacy network could develop into a more cohesive international social movement.

Security Games: Surveillance and Control at Mega-Events addresses the impact of mega-events – such as the Olympic Games and the World Cup – on wider practices of security and surveillance. "Mega-Events" pose peculiar and extensive security challenges. The overwhelming imperative is that "nothing should go wrong." There are, however, an almost infinite number of things that can "go wrong"; producing the perceived need for pre-emptive risk assessments, and an expanding range of security measures, including extensive forms and levels of surveillance. These measures are delivered by a "security/industrial complex" consisting of powerful transnational corporate, governmental and military actors, eager to showcase the latest technologies and prove that they can deliver "spectacular levels of security".

Mega-events have thus become occasions for experiments in monitoring people and places. And, as such, they have become important moments in the development and dispersal of surveillance, as the infrastructure established for mega-events are often marketed as security solutions for the more routine monitoring of people and place. Mega-events, then, now serve as focal points for the proliferation of security and surveillance. They are microcosms of larger trends and processes, through which – as the contributors to this volume demonstrate – we can observe the complex ways that security and surveillance are now implicated in unique confluences of technology, institutional motivations, and public-private security arrangements. As the exceptional conditions of the mega-event become the norm, Security Games: Surveillance and Control at Mega-Events therefore provides the glimpse of a possible future that is more intensively and extensively monitored.

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