Privacy Enhancing technologies (PETs) are a range of technologies that encompass a wide range of technologies making an endeavour to protect personal data of consumers by minimizing the amount of personally identifiable information (PII) that is collected, processed, or shared.
PETs are designed to empower individuals with greater control over their data while authorizing organizations to comply with privacy regulations and reduce the impact and number of data breaches. To increase ease and effectiveness, PETs can be automated as well.
We need Privacy Enhancing Technologies to ensure compliance of privacy regulations that exist, like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and other state specific data privacy regulations. PETs can aid organizations adhere to these regulations and avoid violations that would result in heavy monetary penalties and reputational damage.
PETs are essential in terms of ensuring consumers of the organizations’ dedication to data privacy. This would be particularly useful in industries where data privacy of the consumer is of utmost importance, such as healthcare or finance. They are also helpful in minimizing data breeches and protect the organization and in return its consumers from the negative consequences of a data breech.
Here are a few ways organizations are incorporating Privacy Enhancing Technologies in their system in order to be privacy compliant:
Using AI Models: The integration of AI in building security and privacy enhancing technologies is a crucial step to take in today’s landscape–where the volume of data and the variation of threats to data privacy are multiplying. AI models could be used to create decoy data that would help keep the actual encrypted data secure. This would ensure that the real data does not contain any identifiable information.
Encryption of Data: Organizations are increasing encryption of data that is being stored and when it is being transferred across borders. This allows organizations to be selective about the data that is shared when a part of it is transferred across borders.
Data Analytics: PETs can be used to protect the privacy of individuals when their data is analyzed. For example, they can be used to add noise to data or to create anonymous data sets that do not contain any personally identifiable information which would render any threats or data breeches useless.
The adoption of PETs is growing as organizations become more aware of the importance of data privacy. A Gartner report stated that by 2025, 60% of large organizations will adopt PETs for processing data in distrustful environments. The inculcation of these Privacy Enhancing Technologies would ensure that organizations can continue to be data driven, simultaneously protecting any identifiable, personal information of its consumers.