The Future of Privacy Forum and TRUSTe Launch a Smart Grid Privacy Seal Program

The Future of Privacy Forum and TRUSTe Launch a Smart Grid Privacy Seal Program

The Future of Privacy Forum and TRUSTe Launch a Smart Grid Privacy Seal Program
Leaders in Government and Industry Voice Their Support

WASHINGTON – The Future of Privacy Forum (FPF), the Washington based think tank committed to advancing responsible data practices, today announced a first of its kind privacy seal program for companies that use consumer energy information. The seal will be powered by TRUSTe, the leading data privacy management company with over 5,000 customers.

The seal will be available to companies offering home energy management, remote home control or security, smart thermostats and other services that seek to access consumer energy data.

To create the program, FPF and TRUSTe worked with companies including AT&T, Comcast, Ecofactor, IBM, Intel, Motorola, Neustar, Opower, Tendril, and Verizon. Utilities and utility regulators also provided input on the program. The program will include an advisory committee including Edison Electric Institute, the GridWise Alliance and consumer advocates.

“Consumers, utility regulators and utilities must all be sure that companies that seek to access consumer energy data gain consumer consent and have responsible privacy practices in place,” said FPF Director Jules Polonetsky.

“The seal program is exactly the kind of self-regulatory approach that augments the legal framework protecting privacy, especially in an area that is new and developing,” said FPF Founder and Co-chair Christopher Wolf

“As a number of new and upcoming innovations for the home rely on the collection and use of consumer energy data, a self-regulatory program powered by independent third party enforcement will ensure that participating companies commit to responsible practices,” said TRUSTe CEO Chris Babel.

“I applaud the Future of Privacy Forum’s new privacy seal program which will help to ensure that personal consumer-usage data is strongly protected. The seal is a reflection of Privacy by Design which requires that a proactive approach be taken. PbD recognizes that privacy is best assured when it is strategically interwoven into operational processes and business practices,” said Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner, Dr. Ann Cavoukian, an international leader in privacy issues.

“Opower works in partnership with 75 US utilities to deliver personalized energy-saving insight in a manner that ensures maximal data security and privacy. We applaud FPF for its leadership in developing this seal program, which will help ensure best practices as utilities seek to enhance consumer data access,” said Arkadi Gerney, Opower’s Senior Director for Policy, Partnerships and Public Affairs.

“Our work with utility companies and their customers around the world continually points to a shared, global concern over data privacy,” said Dan Fredrickson, Associate General Counsel for Tendril.  “We are very proud to have been a part of this landmark consumer privacy initiative and believe it represents a big step towards alleviating consumer concerns.”

To learn more about the program, visit www.smartgridprivacy.org

For any questions, or to schedule an interview, please call Beth Sullivan at 202-550-4401 or email media@futureofprivacy.org.

The Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) is a Washington, DC based think tank that seeks to advance responsible data practices. The forum is led by Internet privacy experts Jules Polonetsky and Christopher Wolf and includes an advisory board comprised of leading figures from industry, academia, law and advocacy groups.

About TRUSTe
TRUSTe is the leading global data privacy management company and offers a broad suite of solutions that enable multinational companies to safely and efficiently handle the customer data powering their online businesses – including advertising, cloud services, mobile applications, and websites. Over 5,000 web properties from top companies like Apple, Disney, eBay, Forbes, HP, and Microsoft rely on TRUSTe to ensure compliance with evolving and complex international privacy requirements. TRUSTe’s mission, based on a “Truth in Privacy” framework, is built on a solid foundation of transparency, choice and accountability regarding the collection and use of personal information. TRUSTe’s privacy seal is recognized and trusted by millions of consumers worldwide as a sign of responsible privacy practices. For additional information on TRUSTe and its offerings, please visit http://www.truste.com.

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