Balancing data privacy rights

Data is quickly becoming a point of contention between companies working to collect, process and secure it and governments seeking to force companies to provide them the data they possess. The debate between the two sides revolves around an age-old debate: freedom vs. security. While governments argue that they should have access to the data in order to bolster law enforcement efforts and combat terrorism, companies and data privacy advocates argue that the government does not have an inherent right to unfettered access to data without justified reasons and that data security measures are akin to freedom of speech.

It’s clear that we’re entering a new era of data, and with that comes serious debate regarding who owns the data and how it can be used (including how governments can access it and use it). Right now, that debate is playing out in Australia and India, where legislative measures are being enacted to allow governments easier access to all data. In the end, a balance will need to be found that allows governments to preserve public safety, maintains data privacy rights and ensures that companies will not be overly burdened with data-related regulations.