Elizabeth Johnson in NYT piece, “Privacy Cannot Be a Casualty of the Coronavirus”

Privacy & Data Security

Under coronavirus-related ‘shelter in place’ and ‘stay at home’ orders, millions of Americans are flocking to video-chat platforms and other publicly-available tech for personal, professional and education use. Elizabeth Johnson spoke with New York Times‘ Editorial Board about related privacy concerns, including implications for children’s privacy, the various controversies arising for Zoom, and requested delays on CCPA enforcement. From the article:

Technology companies see an opportunity in this crisis. …Video-chat tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams are stirring concerns that they may be using data vacuuming technologies on the most vulnerable. Schools and businesses that now rely on such services often give people no choice but to accept their terms of service.

Elizabeth Johnson, a lawyer in North Carolina who specializes in data privacy, is at a loss for a solution when her two children, ages 10 and 12, want to use videoconferencing services that she knows will harvest their data. “I have no idea what to do about it,” said Ms. Johnson. “Staying in school now is more important than an amorphous future where companies have made inferences about my children as online consumers.”

The full piece, Privacy Cannot Be a Casualty of the Coronavirus, appeared online April 7, 2020. For more on our privacy team’s insights on the Zoom controversy and other privacy matters, read our blog Practical Privacy.