Computerized Governmental Database Systems Containing Persona

Computerized Governmental Database Systems Containing Persona

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Computerized Governmental Database Systems Containing Personal Information And The Right to Privacy by Lewis William Oleinick, M.P.Af. The University of Texas at Austin, 1993 SUPERVISORS: Chandler Stolp and Philip Doty This report identifies and examines the potential threats to individual privacy created by the collection, aggregation, and dissemination of personal information by governmental agencies and the role computer systems play in potentiating such threats. Computer matching, computer profiling, the national criminal justice database, and portfolio creation via data aggregation of personal information are the governmental activities stipulated to be potentially threatening to personal privacy. These four activities are forms of "dataveillance." Dataveillance poses dangers to the security of civil liberties in a free society. To carry on an intelligible discussion about privacy and how the collection, aggregation, and dissemination of personal information by governmental agencies may threaten individual privacy it is necessary to first define privacy and personal information. Independence, autonomy, dignity, and respect create a conceptual framework upon which privacy may be defined. Privacy is a culturally defined norm. As such a discussion of the American cultural tradition of privacy is necessary to understand both how Americans have defined privacy over time and the roles privacy has played in American society in 1) "starting over," 2) in interpersonal relationships, and 3) in maintaining the "balance of power" with the State. Privacy is held to be as important as the unalienable rights of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" by the majority of the American public. Americans have become more and more concerned with their privacy as intrusive technologies have evolved. Many Americans fear that computers allow the U.S. Government too much power over the average citizen. Privacy has been protected in the United States by precedents set in court cases, by legislation and by executive act. The breadth of cases pertaining to privacy precludes the examination of all cases. Supreme Court cases provide a historical overview of the evolution of the right to privacy as the questions presented to the Court have become more complex with the introduction of new technologies into the law enforcement process. Congress has attempted to address the public's concerns of the government's collection, aggregation, and dissemination of personal information by passing legislation designed to protect individual privacy. The four major pieces of legislation passed by Congress for the protection of the citizen's right to privacy are the Freedom of Information Act, the Privacy Act, the Computer Security Act of 1987, and the Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 1988. The Office of Management and Budget has produced regulations designed to enforce the intent of the legislation promulgated by Congress. These regulations are contained in OMB Circular A-130 which details federal
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This note was uploaded on 01/14/2012 for the course COMPUTER S 170 - Intr taught by Professor Tedpawlicki during the Fall '11 term at Rochester.

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Computerized Governmental Database Systems Containing Persona

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