Data Protection

Security of the information

OECD’s activities to generate trust in information and communications technologies (ICTs) pre-date the growth of the Internet. In the area of privacy, work began in the seventies arising out of concerns about the power of computing allied to the growth of telecommunications that might prejudice the individuals’ personal information and have disruptive consequences for international data flows. At that time, the continuous exchange of information around the globe was still far off. In the late 1990s, concerns focused on the Internet becoming the platform for e-commerce and the need for individuals and business to operate in a secure, predictable, and fair environment. The 1998 Ottawa Ministerial Conference on Electronic Commerce highlighted the need for bridges between different national approaches to enhance privacy protection across borders. In parallel, information security issues received heightened attention. OECD work between 1998 and 2007 elevated the importance of information security and privacy to the continued growth of the information society. With the Internet becoming a critical information infrastructure supporting all kinds of economic and social activity, the 2008 Seoul Ministerial on the Future of the Internet Economy put an even greater emphasis on the need to strengthen confidence and security. While recognising the need for continued implementation of current policies and practices for information security and privacy, Ministers called for an assessment of the application of OECD instruments in light of changing technologies, markets and user behaviour and the growing importance of digital identities. On the eve of the 30th Anniversary of the Privacy Guidelines, this compendium gathers current OECD Policies for Information Security and Privacy developed between 1980 and 2008 by the OECD Working Party on Information Security and Privacy (WPISP) and its parent body, the Committee for Information, Computer and Communications Policy. It includes Ministerial Declarations, Council Recommendations and Policy and Practical Guidance.

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