GSMA Initiative Reinforces European Mobile Operators' Commitment to Consumer Privacy
(Targeted News Service Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) BRUSSELS, Jan. 28 -- Groupe Speciale Mobile Association issued the following news release:
To mark European Privacy Day1, the GSMA is announcing new mobile industry commitments to reinforce privacy protection for mobile app users. Building on the success of the GSMA's Privacy Design Guidelines2 published last year, a number of European mobile operators are participating in a new initiative that ensures the effective and consistent implementation of these Guidelines and holds operators directly accountable for securing the privacy of all customers who use their own-branded mobile apps.
By signing up to an Accountability Framework, a new tool published today and with the potential for application across the mobile ecosystem, GSMA members can now formally commit to ensuring their business practices are compliant with the Guidelines. The core elements of the Framework include:
* Organisational commitment: confirming senior management buy-in and appropriate delegation to ensure the Guidelines are implemented consistently across an organisation's operations;
* Internal programme controls: including staff guidance on practical application of the Guidelines and systems for customers to report privacy-related complaints and incidents; and
* Enforcement for noncompliant organisations: ongoing noncompliance or serious breaches will lead to appropriate sanctions.
"The GSMA and its members were the first to address the ongoing challenges of mobile app privacy through our Guidelines last year," said Tom Phillips, Chief Government and Regulatory Affairs Officer, GSMA. "Now, we continue to lead in this space by introducing this Framework - a direct response to calls for greater responsibility and accountability in the area of app privacy. If adopted across the mobile ecosystem, these Guidelines and Framework would help ensure consistent and comprehensive levels of protection for consumers across multiple platforms."
Since the publication of the Guidelines, a number of European mobile operators have begun to implement them for their own-branded mobile apps, including Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom Orange, Telecom Italia, Telefonica, Telekom Austria, Telenor, TeliaSonera and Vodafone. The Guidelines are already influencing thinking and policy in different regions around the world.3.
"The Framework and Guidelines will help us, as well as the developer community, to create exciting applications and provide greater transparency and security with mobile apps," commented Hannes Ametsreiter, CEO of Telekom Austria Group. "This is especially important for social networks and cloud services where we observe a growing concern among users regarding their personal data. Our own apps have a very high level of privacy and we take the protection of personal data of our customers extremely seriously."
"The GSMA's mobile privacy Guidelines are the most comprehensive attempt to date to embed the principle of privacy-by-design in the creation and development of mobile applications," said Stephen Deadman, Group Privacy Officer for Vodafone. "Accountability forms an essential element in Vodafone's privacy programme, and in ensuring privacy-by-design in our app development process. These principles will help companies across the ecosystem create the internal governance and assurance processes to ensure the guidelines are effectively implemented and deliver better privacy experiences for mobile users in practice."
Phillips continued: "App privacy will remain an important public policy issue for the foreseeable future. This is shown by the intention of the EU Article 29 Working Party to issue an opinion on mobile app privacy in February 2013 and by EU Commissioner Reding's express reference to the importance of app privacy in her speech4 last month. The GSMA will continue to reach out and work with diverse stakeholders to advance app privacy in the interests of safeguarding the confidence and trust of mobile users."
To view the Accountability Framework, please follow this link: http://www.gsma.com/publicpolicy/mobile-and-privacy/resources
TNS C-PreetiSi 97 130202-mv45-4190071
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