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Old 27 Apr 2018, 05:20 PM   #1
The "e" in e-mail
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: EU
Posts: 4,583
‘privacy label’ on the internet

Forked from this post in the Runbox forum:
it is very rare indeed that any software privacy or security explanation is written in plain, clear language that can be properly understood by the average user
as it's not Runbox-specific.

There is a suggestion to create and publish compact summaries of assorted privacy policies:
{W]e can make consumers better informed about how a website could or could not use their data. In fact, there’s a good historic analogy for such a policy: the food label, which was created more than 50 years ago and refined over time. It now provides consumers with simple, easy-to-understand information about their food. We could create a new label to provide similar information about a website’s use of their data. This “privacy label” would be a light-touch way of putting privacy information into consumer’s hands without unreasonably hampering industry.

A privacy label could offer the same sort of important information without banning certain practices or chilling innovation. Right now, websites like Facebook and Twitter do offer “terms and conditions” and privacy policies that explain what information will be collected and how it could be used. But those sheets are filled with legalese. The length and terminology of legal disclosures are, in fact, important to protect the company (and oftentimes the consumer, too) but their complexity cuts against the goal of informing a consumer.

Companies are in a no-win situation. If they try to make a privacy policy simple and easy to understand, they risk being skewered by regulators or class-action plaintiff attorneys for oversimplifying policies to the point that they are not comprehensive or potentially inaccurate. This often poses a higher degree of legal risk than a company is prepared to, or should, take. If the policies are comprehensive, they are probably incomprehensible too. This is why privacy policies currently tend to be comprehensive and sleep inducing — and then nobody reads them. A privacy label offers a middle ground where consumers are provided baseline information about a website’s commercial use of personal information without the restrictive rules and accompanying legal liability on companies.

My personal opinion: file under "dream on" ....

Last edited by janusz : 27 Apr 2018 at 05:45 PM.
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