Today is Data Privacy Day, a day held each year on January 28th to remind individuals in the U.S. and Canada about the importance of keeping personal data safe. This year Data Privacy Day celebrations center around the themes “Own Your Privacy” for individuals and “Respect Privacy” for business as determined by the National Cyber
Today is Data Privacy Day, a day held each year on January 28th to remind individuals in the U.S. and Canada about the importance of keeping personal data safe.
This year Data Privacy Day celebrations center around the themes “Own Your Privacy” for individuals and “Respect Privacy” for business as determined by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), an organization focused on building awareness of and education efforts for everyday internet uses to keep their information safe1, 2. Capitol Technology University understands and espouses the importance of individual’s protecting their information year-round through initiatives, events, and cyber and information security degrees, and is proud to be an official NCSA Champion of Data Privacy Day 20213.
Starting in 2008, January 28th was selected as Data Privacy Day in recognition of January 28, 1981, the day on which Convention 108 was signed1. Convention 108, formally known as The Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data (CETS No. 108), mandated that all involved parties legislate agreed upon principles to “ensure respect in their territory for the fundamental human rights of all individuals with regard to processing of personal data.4”
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Personal Identifiable Information (PII), or personal data, is defined as Any representation of information that permits the identity of an individual to whom the information applies to be reasonably inferred by either direct or indirect means.” Under this definition, PPI includes “information:
- that directly identifies an individual (e.g., name, address, social security number or other identifying number or code, telephone number, email address, etc.) or
- (ii) by which an agency intends to identify specific individuals in conjunction with other data elements, i.e., indirect identification.5”
Because personal data identifies specific individuals and any online information linked to said individual, data theft can result in identity theft, fraudulent purchases, or other malicious activity, Data Privacy Day and its messages are important for all online users to hear and take into consideration.
“The pandemic has ensured that people all over the globe are more connected now than ever before. Consumers are generating more personal data through the use of devices and the businesses that power that connectivity inevitably collect and store that same data,” said Kelvin Coleman, Executive Director, NCSA in a press release. “Data Privacy Day’s main objective is to be a yearly call-to-action; one that spurs discussion, reevaluation and awareness about how people can keep themselves and their data safe, and to show organizations that accountability, transparency, and a commitment to fair and legitimate data collection practices will ultimately lead to enhanced public trust and better brand reputation.6“
NCSA has released the following tips to help internet users keep their personal data safe and businesses keep their company information safe.
- Personal info is like money: Value it. Protect it.
- Keep tabs on your apps.
- Manage your privacy settings.
- If you collect it, protect it.
- Consider adopting a privacy framework.
- Conduct an assessment.
- Transparency builds trust.
- Maintain oversight of partners and vendors.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also released some tips for personal internet users to keep themselves and their highly sought-after personal data safe. According to the FTC, internet users should: “Know what’s on your device, Check the privacy settings, Make sure any software and applications are up to date, and Check the security of your home router”7.
These simple steps can help protect important personal data of all internet users. If you want to learn more about keeping your personal or business data safe, attend a Cyber Saturday hosted by Capitol Tech, or view the university’s many cyber and information technology or security, intelligence, and critical infrastructure degrees.
- National Cyber Security Alliance. (2021). About Data Privacy Day. Retrieved from https://staysafeonline.org/data-privacy-day/about-dpd/.
- National Cyber Security Alliance. (2021). About Us. Retrieved from https://staysafeonline.org/about/.
- National Cyber Security Alliance. (2021). 2021 Data Privacy Day Champions. Retrieved from https://staysafeonline.org/data-privacy-day/all-champions/.
- Council of Europe Portal. (2020). Convention 108 and Protocols. Retrieved from https://www.coe.int/en/web/data-protection/convention108-and-protocol.
- U.S. Department of Labor. Guidance on the Protection of Personal Identifiable Information. Retrieved from https://www.dol.gov/general/ppii.
- Cision PR Newswire. (2021, January 25). National Cyber Security Alliance Kicks off Data Privacy Day This Week to Raise Awareness for Responsible Data Privacy Practices. Retrieved from https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/national-cyber-security-alliance-kicks-off-data-privacy-day-this-week-to-raise-awareness-for-responsible-data-privacy-practices-301214558.html.
- Federal Trade Commission. (2021, January 28). It’s National Data Privacy Day. Retrieved from https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2021/01/its-national-data-privacy-day.