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Using Data to Solve World Challenges

Jared Ragland, Senior Director, Policy — APAC, BSA | The Software Alliance | March 7, 2017
Consumers, businesses, and law enforcement all need greater clarity regarding the rules to play by when it comes to gathering, storing, sharing, and using data in today's data-driven world.

Three Ways to Help Innovation Thrive

Consumers, businesses, and law enforcement all need greater clarity regarding the rules to play by when it comes to gathering, storing, sharing, and using data in today's data-driven world. Here are three ways to achieve this:

  • Free the Data: We must address one of the most immediate threats to the global economy: the threat to data sharing across borders. Data analysis and processing occurs across borders, miles or even continents away from the user. As such, restricting the movement of information across borders is completely counterproductive. Data needs to move freely from one location to another around the world if we're to ensure everything from life-improving breakthroughs and economic growth to cybersecurity and robust trade.
  • Keep It Safe: An increasing amount of personal data is held by companies on behalf of their customers. Users must trust these companies will guard their private data from bad actors, and companies must be able to innovate and improve the protections they offer. At the end of the day, if users do not trust technology, they will not use it, which would have damaging implications for users, the future of data services, and the health of our economy as a whole.
  • Bar Backdoors: Separately, government shouldn't undermine cybersecurity by requiring backdoors or otherwise impeding tools like encryption. Law enforcement and technology companies can work together to promote public safety, and lawmakers should focus on crafting clear and predictable rules on government access to information.

Software-driven data innovation has already sparked unprecedented advances worldwide, but we have only just begun to put data to work for us. There is so much potential for software to help millions more around the world. For this future to become a reality, lawmakers must act to build a supportive policy environment that enables data services to thrive - one that brings more clarity, and that better suits the realities of our modern global economy.

 

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