Kupunguza bei ya Internet ni muhimu katika kuhamasisha ulinzi wa taarifa binafsi na matumizi sahihi ya mitandao

SemperFI

JF-Expert Member
Jul 24, 2018
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Matumizi ya Internet ni muhimu sio tu kwa mtandao usiolipishwa na wazi, lakini pia kwa kutambua haki za binadamu mtandaoni.

Lakini hakuna faida yoyote kati ya hizi inayoweza kupatikana bila ulinzi thabiti na wa kina wa data, usalama wa data, ulinzi wa faragha na mifumo ya haki za binadamu inayolinda taarifa za watu.

Katika muongo uliopita, serikali duniani kote zimefanya maendeleo katika kulinda data za watu binafsi lakini mapungufu yaliyosalia yanazuia watu kutumia kikamilifu mtandao kwa kuhofia ulinzi wa data na haki zao za faragha.

Linapokuja suala la kulinda data binafsi, pengo kubwa zaidi lililobaki linahusiana na uvunaji wa data licha ya mashaka ya wawakilishi wengi wa mashirika ya kiraia, wasomi, na wadhibiti kuhusu manufaa yake ya kiuchumi na kijamii au hata uhalali wake.

Kampuni nyingi za teknolojia na serikali nyingi huchukua mbinu ya "kukusanya kila kitu", ambayo inakinzana moja kwa moja na kanuni za msingi za ulinzi wa data kama vile kupunguza data na ukomo wa matumizi.

njia hiyo haipaswi kuwa ruhusa ya kupuuza au kupunguza kanuni za ulinzi wa data. Katika ulimwengu wa kisasa, kulinda data binafsi sio anasa, ni jambo la lazima.

Nchi nyingi zimetambua kuwa faragha ni haki ya binadamu na nyingi kati yao zimepitisha, kusasisha, au kuanza kuunda mifumo ya ulinzi wa data inayojumuisha zana za uhamishaji data.

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“Collect it all”, but why?

Despite legislative progress to protect personal data, many companies have yet to update their practices and business models in a way that respects and promotes data protection and privacy. Huge amounts of information are still being collected, stored, and moved around, and privacy considerations are often secondary.

A 2015 study of more than 300 ICT companies in the UK, France, and Germany showed that 72% of data gathered by these companies did not end up being used. Other studies from the US and around the world suggest that anywhere between 60 and 80% of the data collected by companies goes unused. With the rise of artificial intelligence and profiling, companies are often trying to figure out how to make money from this unused data. Instead, companies would do well to ask themselves, or be pushed to do by regulators: why was this data collected in the first place?

The danger of dormant data

Online entities have largely been collecting any and all data they want about any person. This can harm people considerably and lead to data-driven discrimination that can, among other things, affect employment, health, housing, and educational opportunities. Data minimisation and purpose limitation principles, which have existed for some time, should apply to stop this from happening – but they are largely ignored.

If these principles are not binding or not enforced, companies and entities will continue to collect more data than they need and the potential for people being harmed will increase. Every minute that unused data remains stored unnecessarily and every time it is transferred across jurisdiction without needing to be, people’s rights are placed at risk. In addition, companies are potentially liable if the data is leaked, misused, or accessed without proper authorisation.

Some companies would justify the continuation of the “collect it all” practices by promising transparency and strong security. These promises are important, but insufficient if not paired with a reduction in the amount of data collected. The best way to prevent data breaches is not to have the data in the first place.

Less is more when it comes to data collection

It is also important to think of data minimisation in the context of the development of artificial intelligence. Regulators should address the relationship between the data harvesting business model and the way algorithms are currently being built. Troves of data are often injected into opaque AI and automated systems to place ads, sell products, and even generate text or image content. It is critical that regulators address the misconception that for the digital economy and AI to succeed, as much data as possible is needed, when what is actually needed is the best possible quality of data, which is more limited.

Paving the way forward

While enforcing data minimisation is not a silver bullet for data transfer disputes or other data protection challenges, it can reduce tensions. After all, the less data collected, the less data to be secured or moved around. We must incentivise companies to collect only the data they need to deliver their products or services, to do so transparently, and to store all data securely. Collecting data that may be “useful” for a theoretical, undefined future purpose goes against data protection principles.

Data protection isn’t about never using any data; it’s about using data in a wise, secure, necessary, and proportionate way. Data minimisation, purpose limitation, data security, and transparency are not interchangeable; each overlapping and complementary principle is as important as another. They allow businesses to operate with confidence and reassure people that they and their information are safe.
 
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