NIST Proposes Privacy Control Roadmap For Organizations

by Pepper Hamilton LLP
Contact

In an age in which safeguarding the privacy of a person’s information is becoming increasingly challenging, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) encourages organizations to devote time and resources to develop a system of privacy controls that would enable them to mitigate the risks to privacy.

The newest edition of the “Security and Privacy Controls for Federal Information Systems and Organizations” report, also known as NIST Special Publication 800-53, published April 30, 2013,1 contains, for the first time, a detailed appendix dedicated to privacy controls.

Privacy Best Practices Catalog

With the exponential growth in popularity of social media and mobile and cloud computing, privacy concerns are, once again, at the top of the list of concerns of both corporations and individuals. The catalog is intended to address the privacy needs of federal agencies and to serve as a roadmap in identifying and implementing privacy controls concerning the entire life cycle of personally identifiable information (PII). It contains a structured set of privacy controls, based on best practices organizations should strive for, that helps organizations comply with applicable federal laws, executive orders, directives, instructions, regulations, policies, standards, guidance, and organization-specific issuance. The document also establishes a linkage and relationship between privacy and security controls for purposes of enforcing respective privacy and security requirements that may overlap in concept and in implementation within federal information systems, programs, and organizations.

Beyond HIPAA – HITECH

The controls in the privacy appendix are derived from legislation, executive orders, policies, directives, regulations, standards, and/or mission/business needs and actually contain provisions very similar to those set forth in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and in the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, which are dedicated to safeguarding informational privacy in the health care sector. NIST intends to broaden the applicability of these standards to federal organizations, and as the NIST controls and standards are generally used as a model for entities in the private sector, to the private sector as well.

Privacy Controls Catalog

Below is a short overview of the privacy controls set forth in the NIST report privacy appendix:

  • Ask for Permission, Not Forgiveness – organizations should only collect personally identifiable information (PII) that they are legally authorized to collect
  • Say What You Do
    • establish effective notices (in privacy policies, System of Records Notices (SORNs), etc.) that are publicly available, explaining how PII is collected, used, shared, etc.; the authority for collection; the choices for the individuals whose PII it is; and the ability to access the information
    • in privacy notices (and other privacy compliance documents), clearly describe the purposes for which PII is collected, used, maintained, and shared
  • A Few Good (Wo)men – appoint a senior officer who will be responsible for developing, implementing, and maintaining an organization-wide governance and privacy program to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations pertaining to privacy. Give this officer sufficient authority and resources to accomplish the mission
  • Brace for Impact – this is twofold: (i) Assess the potential risk to the individual from the collection, storage, use, transmission and disposal of such individual’s PII; and (ii) conduct Privacy Impact Assessments (PIAs) to identify privacy risks and methods to mitigate those risks in information systems, programs, or other activities that pose a privacy risk
  • Ask and Ye Shall Receive – establish privacy roles, responsibilities, and access requirements for contractors and service providers (including those that provide and process information); and include privacy requirements in contracts and other acquisition-related documents
  • Look Within – periodically monitor and audit privacy controls and internal privacy policies
  • Train, Train, Train – develop and administer privacy training for personnel having responsibility for PII
  • Report – develop and disseminate reports to the Office of Management and Budget, Congress, and other oversight bodies, as appropriate, to demonstrate accountability
  • Privacy by Design – design information systems with automated privacy controls that are built into the system
  • Record-keeping – keep an accurate record of disclosure of information
  • Simply the Best – confirm to the best of ability the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, and completeness of the information being collected, as it is collected
  • Integrity – ensure the integrity of PII
  • Minimalism in Collection – collect only the minimum PII elements that are relevant and necessary to accomplish the legally authorized purpose of collection
  • Minimalism in Retention – retain only the minimum PII for the purpose authorized or as legally required; dispose of, destroy, erase, and/or anonymize the PII, regardless of the method of storage, in accordance with data retention requirements
  • Minimalism in Use – minimize the use of PII for testing, training, and research
  • Informed Consent – where possible, acquire consent for the collection, use, storage and sharing of PII, where the individual consenting is aware of the consequences of such decision
  • Access – allow individuals to review PII about them in a timely, simple and inexpensive manner
  • Redress – allow individuals to correct or amend PII maintained by the organization and disseminate the corrected information to other authorized users of the PII
  • Suggestion Box – implement a process for receiving and responding to complaints, concerns, or questions from individuals about the organizational privacy practices
  • Log It – regularly maintain and update an inventory containing a listing of all programs and information systems identified as collecting, using, maintaining, or sharing PII and share it with the organization’s senior privacy officer
  • What’s Your Emergency? – establish a plan to respond to incidents relating to PII.

Pepper Point: The establishment and refinement of working organization-wide privacy controls is no small feat and requires the dedication of time and resources. Corporations that are not in the health care sector, but that handle personal information, should consider starting to implement such controls, using the NIST catalog as a benchmark, so that they are well positioned when such controls become binding law or the governing industry standard.

Endnote

1 http://nvlpubs.nist.gov/nistpubs/SpecialPublications/NIST.SP.800-53r4.pdf.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Pepper Hamilton LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Pepper Hamilton LLP
Contact
more
less

Pepper Hamilton LLP on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):
hide

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.

Security

JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at info@jdsupra.com. In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: info@jdsupra.com.

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.