The Business of Privacy: From Private Anxiety to Commercial Sense? A Broad Overview of why Privacy Ought to Matter to Indian Businesses
Volume 4 Issue 4 (2011)
Eco warriors and wildlife enthusiasts subscribe to the green credo that, while journeying through wide-open spaces, one should “take nothing but memories and leave behind nothing but footprints”. This is getting harder and harder to do in the electronic frontier. Intimate details of one’s personal life are being captured, copied, accessed and preserved all the time, everywhere, instantly. The corporate greed for capturing personal data, coupled with increasing surveillance by governments, makes privacy a critical theme for public discourse. This paper hopes to provide a broad sweep of key developments on the legislative front, particularly in India and Europe, while placing the big picture concerns in a global context. It hopes to transcend the narrow “privacy as a human right” rhetoric and ex- plain why caring about privacy is as much a corporate concern as a private anxiety. It sets out some of the key drivers for taking it seriously and the rationale for why privacy makes good business sense.