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Cambridge Analytica gets New Zealanders talking about data use

26 Mar 18

Spurred on by recent stories surrounding Cambridge Analytica and big data, many New Zealanders are questioning whether they can see and control how their data is used online.

That’s the word from InternetNZ CEO Jordan Carter, who adds, “Our purpose is to promote the benefits of the Internet and protect its potential, which means ensuring New Zealanders are informed, empowered, and safe online.”

In a statement released this week, Carter discusses the fallout from the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and how it has impacted the way Kiwis view their data.

"We agree there are real concerns raised by large-scale sharing and use of user data, but there is also a risk that knee-jerk responses fail to address broader problems.”

"The same platforms that connect people also track their activity, and can feed targeted advertising and other content to influence people’s behaviour as consumers and citizens,” explains Carter.

"There are issues here around sovereignty, the value and use of data and the implications of data management. There’s a real need to open a conversation here in New Zealand about these issues.”

“Addressing Internet issues like this one is part of our purpose,” he continues.

Cater says the company welcomes investigations by UK authorities into whether the use of this data in this way was unlawful.

“But even with the best individual privacy protections, there are broader issues including society-wide impacts of data use and sharing.”

InternetNZ will be exploring these issues further in 2018. The company will support informed discussion on the Privacy Bill introduced to Parliament this week, and will be providing forums and analysis to support this conversation.