Today, the White House indicated that it has issued an interim report on big data and privacy. The interim report follows an initial report issued in May 2014, which President Obama commissioned in order to examine the impacts and effects that the use of “big data” can have on individuals’ daily lives. The interim report is another building block in the Administration’s efforts to leverage the enormous and varied uses of big data, while at the same time protecting and respecting individual privacy. The White House will soon release an additional legislative proposal concerning student data privacy (previously announced in January), in addition to the Council of Economic Advisors report on discriminatory pricing practices also issued today in conjunction with the interim report.
These reports and legislative proposals are all part of a larger, concerted focus by the administration on cybersecurity, data security, and privacy in general. Additionally, Congress is also working on several different aspects of these issues, and has held several hearings on cybersecurity and data breach notification legislation in the past weeks. Continued debate on these issues is expected for several months as Congress and the Administration both seek to reach agreements in order to better protect the nation from the myriad of cyber threats we now face.