The vaccine inoculation passport, ticket to..?

By Rob van den Hoven van Genderen   On the initiative of Greece European, countries are discussing the enactment of a ‘vaccination passport for Covid-19’, in the first place to allow vaccinated person to visit the starving European tourist destinations. Will this be the start of a societal partition within Europe and the Netherlands between ‘free traveling’ vaccinated people and locked down ‘non vaccsers’?   The new chapter in the fight against Covid-19 has started, the vaccination, hopefully the beginning of the end, although there are not enough vaccines delivered by the producers because we wanted to have a bargain and are one of the last to be delivered to. The over-organized Netherlands is the last in Europe to begin with vaccination anyway. The Netherlands is so well organized that decision-making is stranded by the segmented organization. Who determines the policy: the Minister, the security region, the laboratories, the State Health institution (RIVM,) OMT or...

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The Dutch DPA on data brokering

Interview with Cecile Schut – Dutch DPA   “To hold grip on your personal data and knowing what others know about you is crucial” - Aleid Wolfsen   The Dutch DPA is the independent supervisor in the Netherlands that guards our constitutionally enshrined protection of personal data. One of the organisation’s main tasks is to monitor companies and governments to determine whether they are complying with the applicable privacy legislation, by means of investigations. In addition to conducting supervision, the Dutch DPA advises on new laws and regulations and provides information. We spoke with Cecile Schut, Director of System Supervision, Security and Technology about the meaning of data brokering, the DPA’s perspective on this subject, how to tackle illegal data trafficking, and more.   1. We’re going to talk specifically about data brokering/trafficking, but first of all, I’m curious about your position within the Dutch DPA. You have been appointed Director of System Supervision, Security and...

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On the misleading metaphors of the information age

By Hans Schnitzler   Perhaps the most apt definition of privacy comes from the Dutch artist and Internet critic Tijmen Schep: “privacy is the right to be imperfect,” he argues. This view of privacy is at odds with an ideology also known as computationalism. This is a philosophy of life that reduces the human mind to an information-generating machine, that sees a data problem in every social problem and that has replaced the belief in higher values with a belief in mathematical values.   With this bits and bytes approach to reality, one chases absolute control and predictability of everyday existence. In his book New Dark Age, James Bridle, a computer scientist, characterizes computationalism as a ‘cognitive hack’: decision-making processes and responsibility are transferred to machines, automated thinking - i.e., computation - replaces conscious thought, with the ultimate result that we increasingly act like ‘perfect’ machines. At least, that is the suggestion.   According to Bridle, computational...

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