Now here’s a little curiosity: a press release from the Information Commissioner’s Office relating to the cost-effectively of data protection best practice — as explained in a new 93-page report, The Privacy Dividend (click here for the full text), which seeks to explain how to put a value on personal information and assess the benefits of protecting privacy.

Subtitled ‘the business case for investing in proactive privacy protection’, the report includes practical tools to help organisations prepare a business case for investing in privacy protection. Said Information Commissioner Christopher Graham:
“No organisation can neglect to protect people’s privacy. Not only is it the law, but there is also a hard headed business imperative. This report provides organisations with the tools to produce a financial business case for data protection ensuring privacy protection is hardwired into organisational culture and governance.”

The practical tools contained in the report include:

• guidance on the steps involved in a privacy protection scheme to assess the costs and benefits;
• guidance on creating business cases for implementing a new system or changing an existing system;
• calculation sheets to assess the value of personal information and put figures to the business case.

Datonomy likes the idea of appealing to privacy protection best practice as a practical businessness proposition, since it addresses head-on the sentiment expressed in some quarters that everything to do with privacy and/or data protection is just another chore and an unwanted expense. But does this report win the argument? Let’s hear your views!

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