Big Data and Privacy – Exploring the Ethical Boundaries

Are there – or should there be – boundaries between your information and businesses? That’s the question that was explored by a packed auditorium of business, faculty and student participants attending CEBC’s fall public program. Rapid advances in technology, powerful data gathering and analytical capabilities, and a proliferation of social media tools have created a collision course between the benefits of business’ customized marketing and service capabilities and the individual’s right to control access to and use of private information.

Following a keynote by Jules Polonetsky, executive director of the Future of Privacy Forum, a Washington, D.C., based think tank, a panel of experts including Jay Cline of PwC, William McGeveran of the University of Minnesota Law School and Tobi Tanzer of HealthPartners debated the benefits, risks and ethical boundaries of big data and privacy.

The industry’s underlying principles of notice, choice, purpose specification, use limitation and data minimization are all important. But determination of the ethical boundaries will take the collective efforts of “best practiced” business leaders, engaged public policy makers and insightful privacy advocates.

Full-length video of the event: