Privacy -- Handling Personal Data

by Willis H. Ware

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Discusses the findings of the Privacy Protection Study Commission, whose final report, [Personal Privacy in an Information Society], was published in July 1977. The general thrust of the Commission recommendations is openness and fairness in recordkeeping. The individual will be given a legally enforceable expectation that his records will be kept confidential. If the individual discovers an error, the recordkeeping institution is required to correct its records, inform the recipients of the record, and in some cases, will be required to correct the information at the source of the error. In the areas of insurance or consumer credit, an individual is to be told what items in the record have resulted in an adverse decision. In the employment and personnel area where compliance is voluntary, the Commission recommends that management take affirmative action to review all records and purge them of information not relevant or necessary.

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