Cisco’s top lawyer calls privacy a fundamental right, urges global rules
Internet hardware giant Cisco has called on governments and citizens around the world to establish privacy as a fundamental human right in the digital economy. It says that with IoT, 5G, and AI promising to soon reshape how we interact with technology, the company is urging governments to adopt comprehensive and interoperable data protection laws to secure that right.
Cisco and its chief legal officer, Mark Chandler (in the photo above), begin with a call on their home country, the United States, to develop a federal privacy law that assures customers their data is protected. The American system should not just look to solve for today’s privacy discussions around monetization of customer data; it should aim to solve for the complex privacy needs of a world where tens of billions of devices are connected to the internet.
Chandler urges three basic principles for U.S. legislation:
- Ensure interoperability between different privacy protection regimes;
- Avoid fracturing of legal obligations for data privacy through a uniform federal law that aligns with the emerging global consensus;
- Reassure customers that enforcement of privacy rights will be robust without costly and unnecessary litigation.
Globally, Cisco calls for common elements in privacy legislation, some of which include:
- Security: Assign responsibility to protect the confidentiality, integrity, availability, and resiliency of data;
- Transparency: Explain how data is collected, used, transferred, and disclosed;
- Accountability: Ensure governance for data under the entity’s stewardship, including a data protection team, applying a risk-based approach;
- Innovation: Recognize multi-stakeholder-driven initiatives that enhance transparency and provide paths for implementation.
“As we enter an era powered by IoT, 5G, and AI, it is critical for our customers, partners, governments, and the public to know Cisco’s commitment to privacy is stronger than ever,” said Chandler. “Our belief that privacy is a fundamental human right has helped make Cisco the most trusted supplier of technology products and solutions, embedding privacy at the core of each Cisco technology that powers the internet.”