Initiating “Conversations on Privacy”

As we engage with people around the world, it is clear that privacy issues are top of mind for consumers, businesses, governments and policymakers. It seems like every day there is a new story highlighting concerns related to the collection, use and protection of personal data. Legislators and regulators are carefully monitoring the landscape, and actively exploring ways to protect consumers’ privacy. Meanwhile, consumers are getting more engaged, and asking important questions about how data is protected.

To advance this discussion, Microsoft is launching a series of privacy conversations at our Innovation & Policy Center in Washington, D.C. Microsoft has a longstanding commitment to privacy, and works hard to earn the trust of customers around the world by, in part, developing and adopting meaningful privacy practices. We believe companies have an important role to play in privacy discussions and at each event we will convene a diverse mix of stakeholders to explore some of the most pressing issues related to data privacy.

The first conversation, happening this week, will focus on the need for companies to implement comprehensive privacy programs that help ensure data is collected and used responsibly, and which demonstrate accountability by building information safeguards into new products and services.

I am pleased to be joined by an impressive group of privacy experts who will help us examine the issue from a variety of perspectives: Federal Trade Commissioner Julie Brill; Leslie Harris, president of the Center for Democracy and Technology; Professor Peter Swire of Ohio State University and the Center for American Progress; and Barb Lawler, the chief privacy officer of Intuit, who will join me in detailing some of the specific ways that each of our companies work to safeguard our customers’ data.

I anticipate a lively and informative discussion on Friday and look forward to continuing the conversation in future installments of our privacy series.

About the Author

Chief Privacy Officer, Microsoft

Brendon Lynch is the Chief Privacy Officer at Microsoft, where he has responsibilities for all aspects of Microsoft’s privacy approach, including privacy policy creation and implementation across the company, influencing the creation of privacy and data protection technologies for customers and overseeing communication and engagement with all external audiences. Before joining Microsoft, Brendon led the privacy and risk solutions business at software maker Watchfire. Prior to entering the software industry in 2002, Brendon spent nine years in Europe and North America with PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he provided privacy and risk management consulting services.