On the September 1st, Dr Glenn Parry, Associate Professor in Strategy & Operations Management at UWE Bristol, spoke at the 2nd Gregg Latchams’ Business Network Event: “The Internet of Us; What does privacy mean in the digital age?”, held at the Watershed.
The event, hosted by Gregg Latchams’ Digital and Media team, explored the meaning of privacy in the digital age.
The event started with award winning television news journalist Geoff White showing attendees how the global technology industry harvests data leaking from personal devices through a live, interactive phone hacking stage performance. Geoff also took guests into the dark web, the hidden network of websites where a parallel black market in personal data is thriving.
Glenn spoke on a panel after the demonstration with Emily Taylor, Emily Taylor Internet Research and Editor of the Journal of Cyber Policy; Ed Boal, Associate Solicitor at Gregg Latchams’; and Geoff White.
Dr Parry spoke about his research focussed on the Digital Economy, where he is the co-investigator on the EPSRC Hub of All things project that aims to give control of personal data back to the individual.
As Dr Parry explained, online privacy is objective – are you being observed? Vulnerability is subjective and relates to your individual risk.
An individual may feel vulnerable even if online privacy is high. At the moment firms you use such as electricity companies, retailers, banks etc. each hold a ‘vertical’ supply piece of data but don’t know your use context. Context exists in the horizontal at a point in time, or location across multiple vertical data sets. Part of the reason Facebook and Google offer you the opportunity to use their passwords to gain access to websites is to get that horizontal data. However, this raises important questions as to privacy and vulnerability.
Dr Parry is working as part of the new EPSRC HAT Living Lab project to ask questions about user vulnerability. He hopes the research will lead to understanding of online privacy, vulnerability and help to create frameworks that can guide business in the future.
The full Q + A with Glenn can be found here.