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Random thoughts (and questions) on PRISM, data gathering and metadata

Question asked by Greg Knieriemen Employee on Jul 6, 2013
Latest reply on Jul 11, 2013 by Prasad Rallapalli

Since the US PRISM program has generated a great deal of interest, its now been revealed that other countries (including France) have data collection programs "which sweeps up nearly all the data transmissions, including telephone calls, e-mails and social media activity". It's probably fair to say many countries have programs which collect data at some scale. There are a number of elements to the concern, but rather than focus on the political, I'd like to focus on the technical aspects of these programs and what they mean to consumers and business users and ultimately the implication on data management architectures.


How will businesses and governments react?


Eric Hibbard mentions that Data Protection Regulation is moving through the European Parliament. The implications from this will be far ranging.

  • If the EU establishes data protection standards, could this become a defacto global standard for businesses?
  • How will global technology companies react?
  • Could we see metadata regulation?


Simon Wardley has suggested this is an opportunity for the EU to start investing in "web services" (which I interpret as public cloud) with 100 Billion Euros.

  • Are global islands of public clouds the solution or does it ultimately create an unsustainable level of complexity for consumers and businesses?
  • Have private clouds suddenly become a more interesting option for businesses? Could private clouds breed new consumer services?


Do vendors or technologists have a responsibility to educate the public on how these technologies work?


Much of the information on data gathering is coming from political commentary in the media. Some of it is accurate while some of it is... well... technically suspicious.

  • What role or obligation do vendors and technologists have to provide education on how these technologies work?


I'll probably add more to this list of questions, but I'm curious what you think... and what questions you have.