Privacy challenges for smart city governments

27 01 2016
Smart cities produce a wide range of privacy challenges. In a smart city ICT  enables the extensive monitoring and steering of city maintenance, mobility, air and water quality, energy usage, civic unrest, tourist streams, and so on. Evidently, such processes use and produce massive amounts of data that require systematic privacy impact assesments. I developed a framework to assess which kinds of data produce particular privacy risks. The monitoring of air quality, for instance, produces impersonal data that are not subject to privacy concerns. Crime registers, however, are at the other end of the extreme and are highly sensitive. In addition, the purpose of data is important as well: service purposes seem to contain less risk than surveillance purposes. Combining data and purpose in a 2×2 grid enables an assessment of high, medium and low risk big data applications. The framework also suggests how specific applications can move from being low risk to high risks because of the technology used. Crowd control based on heat sensors, for instance,  produces less personal data than crowd control based on CCTV (which allows for facial recognition software to identify people). The basic framework is here, but the full paper is online on Research Gate (you need to register to get access), and in progress for a journal.
Privacy framework

The full article is available here: 




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