As part of the FTC’s “Reclaim Your Name” initiative, FTC Commissioner Julie Brill delivered the Sloan Cybersecurity Lecture at NYU-Poly. Her talk focused on the rise of big data as a social force, the historical role of the FTC in privacy protection, and the roles that different parties (i.e. engineers, lawyers, policymakers, and advertising industry members) can play in ensuring both privacy and utility in the era of big data.
The lecture was followed by a lively and enlightening panel discussion, chaired by Katherine Strandburg (NYU). The panel members were Julie Brill (FTC), Jennifer Barrett Glasgow (Acxiom), Julia Angwin (WSJ), and Daniel Weitzner (MIT). The discussion centered on issues attending big data, with panelists discussing transparency, accountability, anonymity, and potential harm or discrimination that large-scale machine learning can facilitate. Finally, the panelists presented their views on the potential for privacy protection via legal or industry directives.