Policy Documents

Abuse and Misuse of Personal Information

John Stephenson –
March 13, 2013
In this study, John Stephenson writes about the advances in technology that can provide a number of useful products and services that can either enhance or threaten personal privacy, depending on how these products or services are used and for what purpose. These goods raise serious concerns about privacy, which leaves policymakers looking for solutions, especially in the context of online privacy and biometric identification. In an effort to craft solutions to privacy concerns, experts argue that policymakers must exercise caution. Rushed and unconsidered solutions run the risk of limiting consumers and becoming unworkable. The study notes that when policymakers hear stories about consumers being tracked online and companies and governments collecting biometric information for various purposes, they feel compelled to act. However, they are quickly learning that addressing the potential for abuse and misuse of personal information is neither easy nor simple.