The Return of the Dispatch and Predictions for the Future of the Privacy Industry
October 31, 2017 – Todd Ruback
The Dispatch returns with some predictions for the privacy industry, the GDPR, and ePrivacy.
After a long hiatus, the Dispatch is back!! I would be remiss if I didn’t begin with the already public news that Evidon, where I work as the chief privacy officer, was acquired a little more than three months ago by Crownpeak, a Denver based software company backed by K1 Investment Management, to become the leading SaaS based digital experience management company in the market.
The Evidon acquisition is a case study as the first significant private equity exit in the privacy industry, but with the GDPR as an economic catalyst, won’t be the last. Already we are seeing automated and scalable tools hitting the market from innovative companies such as Prifender, which utilizes artificial intelligence to map personal data, and Radar, which recently received the prestigious 2017 HPE-IAPP Innovation Award for Privacy Technology for its SaaS-based incident response management software. I have no doubt that other game changing technologies will soon emerge, and will ultimately result in the next tech giant being spawned originally as a privacy solutions provider. In fact, I’ll even predict that this future tech giant will emerge from either Dublin or Berlin and when it proves true, remember that you heard it from me first.
In other privacy news, new use of smart technology in the toy industry is raising concerns that some toys such as Mattel’s Aristotle doll, marketed as a baby monitor with a connected camera, could collect sensitive behavioral information about young children in their bedrooms. This novel use case combining artificial intelligence, connected devices and toys is certainly an example of fresh thinking, but even more impressive is Mattel’s nimble responsiveness to the public’s privacy concerns by pulling the Aristotle doll off the market.
While the GDPR marches ever closer, many are also closely following the fast moving legislative revisions to the ePrivacy Directive, meant to protect the privacy and confidentiality of electronic communications. Currently the European Parliament has adopted its own version of the draft ePrivacy Regulation, paving the way for the next step in the process, the trilogue negotiations between the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission. It’s highly unlikely that these revisions will be completed in time for the final ePrivacy Regulation to go into effect contemporaneously with the GDPR on May 25, 2018, but it’s prudence calls for a wait and see approach. I’ll be in Brussels at the upcoming IAPP Data Protection Congress and will be sure to monitor the situation and promise to report back with anything new.
Also, be sure to check out this great article in AdExchanger by Allison Schiff breaking down the GDPR into easily digestible pieces. I love this article not only because she clearly articulates how the law will impact the digital marketing industry, but also because I’m quoted!!