What’s in a name (or Why Privacy Ref)

An important decision when starting a company is the name. Many people have asked me “why Privacy Ref?” There are actually four reasons the name was chosen.

Dungeons and Data Breaches

It is no mystery that I am a fan of most nerdy things, most of all table-top games like Dungeons and Dragons. Interestingly, the skills necessary to play such games intersect quite often with the skills necessary to build an effective privacy program. Whether it is teamwork, preparation, or knowl...

Exposing Employee Personal Information (Unintentionally)

Before COVID, my wife and I tried to get out for lunch together at least once a week (when I was not on the road). Today we went to one of our favorite lunch restaurants and found a surprising sign when we approached the hostess to be seated.

Databreach or Ransomware?

An interesting point about ransomware was made to me after my most recent quarterly breach webinar. Essentially, the statement noted that ransomware is a not the same as a data breach. While this is technically true for the most part, there is enough relevant overlap in the implications of other ...

In person training is back!

COVID is not over, but life is returning to what is being called “normal”. I’m looking forward to traveling, seeing my family, eating in restaurants, going to the movies, and returning to working with people face-to-face. Professionally, I miss teaching in person.

How much personal data did your cup of coffee cost you today?

A simple trip to your local coffee shop or visit to their website to browse or place a pick-up order can lead to divulging more personal information than you may have intended. Starting an account, signing up for a rewards program or simply completing a transaction will have you literally giving ...

Making Privacy Impact Assessments less of a PIA

Every day I speak with clients about a number of different privacy related matters. However, the one that has become most prominent is setting up or running privacy impact assessments. PIAs are a tool used to identify the potential privacy risk from any existing or proposed activity, product, sys...

Let’s talk about HIPAA

Do you know what HIPAA stands for? What does HIPAA protect? Are there any exemptions? Watch this short video to get the answers.

Living with a Privacy Professional

Married to a Privacy Professional has made me aware of things that I would not normally pay attention to. Awareness of who I am giving my information to and what it is going to be used for is something that I am trying to be more cognizant of. When the boys were growing up, our […]

Excessive Jargon and Legalese

One of my biggest personal gripes is the use of excessive jargon when creating privacy policies. It can be readily apparent when a notice or policy, or even a law, is written by a privacy or legal professional but not written for the audience it targets. However, it is possible to create a more e...