Privacy by Design

1. Proactive, not Reactive; Preventative not Remedial

The key idea behind this first principle is that you should think about data privacy at the beginning of the data security planning process or development process. Less is more.

2. Privacy as the Default Setting

Privacy by Default directly lowers the data security risk profile: the less data you have, the less damaging a breach will be. A golden rule of thumb, if you cannot protect it, do not collect it. Very hard to do in the age of big data, always ask yourself the question, what is the purpose here? Can I use a technical solution to obtain the same result rather than collecting and processing storing PII of data subjects?

3. Privacy Embedded into Design

Encryption, data anonymization techniques and more, use these data security techniques as a starting point and not add them at the end of the project. Remember data that you do not collect or do not process do not require protection. Your development cycle most likely will be shorter as opposed to a long development process where you have to protect loads of data.

4. Full Functionality – Positive-Sum, Not Zero-Sum

You can have privacy, revenue, and growth. You’re not sacrificing one for the other. Often commercial stakeholders within a company require developers to obtain lots of data under the assumption it does not hurt to have more data than required. Under the GDPR this is no longer an option. Plan carefully.

5. End-to-End Security – Full Lifecycle Protection

Privacy protections follow the data, wherever it goes. The same PbD principles apply when the data is first created, shared with others, and then finally archived. Encryption and authentication should protect the data up till the point the data has no purpose anymore, deletion of data that has no purpose is key.

6. Visibility and Transparency – Keep it Open

Be open, be transparent, do not bury your customer with long legal documents which the average person does not understand. KISS, keep it simple stupid, your customers will love you.

7. Respect for User Privacy – Keep it User-Centric

This final principle just makes it very clear that consumers own the data.

  • Data must be accurate.
    Consumers should be in control of their data
    Consumers should be able to edit their data
    Consumers should be able to withdraw consent
    The right to be forgotten should not be forgotten

Reference Material

The seven founding principles of privacy by design 7foundationalprinciples

Privacy by design, similar to the above document privacy-by-design

Strategic Privacy by Design

Privacy by design might be hard to implement due to its somewhat high-level perspective and lack of real-life examples.

An alternative is Strategic Privacy by Design. This approach prevents a few pitfalls and comes with a core example that most developers can relate too. It is also great for product managers who have to deal with privacy by design.