Well, who else could it have been? The Crouch End Chapter of the Institute for Data Protection was faced with an overwhelming case to declare America’s National Security Agency to be its Data Protection Villain of the Year.
What other institution has done more to make people appreciate the potential potholes of large data capture programmes? Has any other institution so quickly united global regulators in fury/impotence/admiration of what they have been alleged to have got up to?
Is there any other institution that has found it so hard to explain to
Is there any other institution that has failed so spectacularly to keep data secret? If we ever needed evidence that data “in the wrong hands” is a toxic liability, then here it is.
Finally, is there any other institution that has caused the national intelligence agencies of other countries to fear that the public may soon focus on what those intelligence agencies might also have been getting up to? Or caused the cloud computing providers of America to fear that their global expansion plans have really hit the buffers?
I rest my case.
The award will take the form of a chant, to be sung softly, by candlelight, by the ICO chorus at the beginning of next week’s data protection carol service in Wilmslow. I understand that the chorus is still working on the tune, but the words will be:
Make us atone for causing data mayhem
We’re no saint – we are truly a sinner
Beat us on the bottom with the Data Directive
Cummon, do it, be a regulatory hero
At hurting those who’ve just confessed
We deliberately broke them data rules
To stop us from breaking them rules anew?
You don’t scare us – we’re so much greater than Google
Absorbing global data night and day