In the News


Paul Schwartz in the news:



Rethinking privacy

Paul Schwartz quoted in Government Technology Magazine, June 2, 2014

The concept of privacy simply covers a lot of territory, and that’s part of the problem, said Paul Schwartz…. “It can mean everything and it can mean nothing,” he explained. “That can have some dangerous consequences.”


My dinner with Jan

Paul Schwartz noted in Privacy Perspectives, March 18, 2014

I suggested Jan for the keynote slot to conference organizer and Berkeley Law Prof. Paul Schwartz, thinking him to be a “long shot.”… Prof. Schwartz’ prominence, charm, power of persuasion and German language skills, as well as Berkeley’s prestige no doubt were compelling factors.


Is Sacramento the world’s capital of Internet privacy regulation?

Paul Schwartz, Deirdre Mulligan, Chris Hoofnagle quoted in Forbes TECH blog, January 6, 2014
Paul [Schwartz] explained that the state-federal dialogue has broken down because the current Congress is gridlocked. Meanwhile, California continues enacting “a tidal wave of California privacy laws.” He cautioned against waiting for a “federal Godot,” i.e., expecting Congress to reengage productively on privacy regulation.

Deirdre Mulligan … praised California’s long reputation for privacy leadership. She said regulators outside California look to California as a laboratory of experimentation, and those experiments have ripple effects across the globe.

Chris Hoofnagle … said notice-and-choice is based on rational choice theory, but consumers don’t always act rationally…. He believes consumers see the words “privacy policies” as seals, i.e., certifications of minimum protections. He favors correcting this by establishing minimum substantive legal standards for anyone who uses the term “privacy policy.”


From Petraeus scandal, an apostle for privacy

Paul Schwartz quoted in The New York Times, January 5, 2014
“They made a pretty good facial claim that the government violated the ‘no disclosure without consent’ rule,” said Paul M. Schwartz.


Privacy laws can create opportunities, limitations, California lawmakers advised

Deirdre Mulligan and Paul Schwartz quoted in Bloomberg BNA , December 16, 2013

“Privacy rules don’t necessarily erode innovation. Sometimes they’re the fabric of it,” said Deirdre Mulligan, co-director of the University of California Berkeley School of Law Center for Law & Technology.

The ‘California Effect’ is how what California does ripples across the nation and the world, said Paul Schwartz…. “The California Effect is typically the first stage. It would be followed by action in D.C.,” which Schwartz said has been lacking. “The question becomes in absence of action in D.C., what should we do?” he asked. The question is whether “to act or not to act” in the world’s ninth largest economy.


What is personally identifiable information (PII)? Finding common ground in the EU and US

Paul Schwartz co-authors article in Concurring Opinions, June 26, 2013

Numerous attempts have been made to bridge the gap between U.S. and E.U. privacy law, but a very large initial hurdle stands in the way. The two bodies of law can’t even agree on the scope of protection let alone the substance of the protections. The scope of protection of privacy laws turns on the definition of “personally identifiable information” (PII). If there is PII, privacy laws apply. If PII is absent, privacy laws do not apply.


Groups at odds over possible privacy provisions in US-EU trade agreement

Paul Schwartz quoted in Bloomberg BNA, May 27, 2013 (registration required)

It is “interesting that privacy is going to be looked at under the rubric of e-commerce,” Paul Schwartz, University of California Berkeley School of Law professor and co-director of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology, told BNA…. The discussion about privacy will likely “become [ ] part of a larger e-commerce discussion” and thus will be a “much bigger discussion with different regulators,” he explained.


EU privacy and the cloud: consent and jurisdiction under the proposed regulation

Paul Schwartz writes for Bloomberg BNA, May 13, 2013

The Proposed Regulation extends EU privacy jurisdiction quite broadly…. While it is necessary and appropriate for the European Union to protect the online privacy interests of its citizens, the European Union should not become the super-regulator of all cloud companies regardless of the extent of an impact on its citizens.


IRS high-tech tools track your digital footprints

Paul Schwartz quoted in US News & World Report, April 5, 2013

“I don’t really see strong legal regulation in place to manage something of this magnitude,” says Paul Schwartz, University of California law professor and co-director of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology. The IRS is working with the same kind of oversight and rules that were developed in the paper tax-return era, says Schwartz. But with the technology it now has, the agency can “see into people’s lives” as never before.


Report from the BCLT Privacy Law Conference in Palo Alto

Paul Schwartz cited in Datenschutz-Blog, April 2, 2013

From my perspective, a highlight was, in particular, the panel on “The EU-US Privacy Collision” on which Paul Schwartz (BCLT and Berkeley Law), Christopher Wolf (Hogan Lovells), Karl-Nicolas Peifer (University of Cologne) and Michael D. Hintze (Chief Privacy Counsel and Assistant General Counsel of Microsoft Corporation) were represented.


Surveillance tools at issue in lawsuit

Paul Schwartz quoted in The Wall Street Journal, (requires registration) July 15, 2012

Paul M. Schwartz … said the use of pen registers and trap-and-trace technology is likely up because the public is spending more time on smartphones and the Internet. … The data available to agencies is much broader than when investigators tracked phone calls to and from a single line, he said. “It’s not surprising they’re going to make use of it,” he said.


Paul Schwartz Notes Prosser’s Impact on Privacy Law

San Francisco Chronicle, February 26, 2012 by Paul M. Schwartz
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/02/25/INNB1N9ULJ.DTL

William Prosser, the dean of the UC Berkeley School of Law, altered the path of American law in 1960. He did so with an article, simply titled “Privacy,” in our law school’s California Law Review. This article had an unparalleled influence on the development of the law, one still felt today.


Paul Schwartz Compares European and US Privacy Concerns

San Francisco Chronicle, Dot.Commentary, February 10, 2012 by James Temple
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/02/10/BUJ31N4R67.DTL

In an interview, he said European—particularly German—perceptions are rooted in 19th century philosophers such as Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, as well as the way private information was used against citizens under communist rule and dictators like Adolf Hitler. “Americans just feel more comfortable with this rough-and-tumble social discourse,” he said.


Paul Schwartz Notes Increase in Online Privacy Risks

San Francisco Chronicle, Dot.Commentary, January 27, 2012 by James Temple
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/26/BU5N1MUAJB.DTL

Paul Schwartz, faculty director for the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology, noted that the broad technological trends of the day, in and of themselves, raise “all kinds of data security and privacy issues.”


Paul Schwartz Taps Ngram to Chart Privacy and the Law

Policy by the Numbers, January 9, 2012 by Paul M. Schwartz & Daniel J. Solove
http://policybythenumbers.blogspot.com/2012/01/google-ngram-and-information-privacy.html

In our recent work, The PII Problem, we drew on the NGram viewer to gain a sense of peaks and valleys in policymakers’ attention to “information privacy” from 1950 to 2000…. From the 1990s on, the continuing use of the attention to “information privacy” reflected society’s growing concern with privacy in the PC and then Internet era.


Paul Schwartz Calls for Privacy Standards

Washington Internet Daily, January 5, 2012 by Kamala Lane
http://www.warren-news.com/widtrial.htm (registration required)

There should be incentives for companies “to keep information in the least identifiable form possible,” Schwartz said. Companies also should have an obligation “to track what happens to records after they’re released” and risk assessments are needed to figure out when that identifiable information is likely to become identified “and allow people to assess the levels of risk that follow.”


Paul Schwartz Compares US and European Privacy Law

American Public Media, Marketplace, September 14, 2011 by John Moe
http://bit.ly/nRykqJ

“In Europe, there is a comprehensive privacy law in each nation which requires that online privacy be protected. In the U.S., we regulate sector by sector, and there are notable gaps in protection. We have statutory protection for things like health care privacy, video privacy, credit card records. But there is no one law that protects online privacy. The exception for that is there is a Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, but that only protects those who are 13 years or younger.”


Paul Schwartz, Christopher Hoofnagle React to Facebook’s Political Strategy

The New York Times, March 28, 2011 by Miguel Helft and Matt Richtel
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/technology/29facebook.html?scp=2&sq=Berkeley&st=nyt

Mr. Schwartz said Facebook seemed to have learned quickly that demands for regulation would pile up, not just from users and advocacy groups, but from competitors. “What they’re doing is pragmatic, and it’s pragmatic to do it sooner rather than later,” he said.

“The practical implication is it’s going to make it more difficult for advocates to convince members of Congress that Facebook presents a privacy problem,” said Chris Jay Hoofnagle…. “One of the big points is to show lawmakers that Facebook is important to their own campaigns,” Mr. Hoofnagle said. “Once that fact is established, Congress will not touch Facebook.”


Paul Schwartz Comments on Google’s Opt-Out Policy for Germany

The Christian Science Monitor, August 12, 2010 by Stephen Kurczy
http://bit.ly/dheORv

Street View’s opt-out option, says Paul Schwartz of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology in California, highlights how Web users can snoop without being snooped on. “The Golden Rule is not enforced or enforceable,” he says. “Google is not saying that since you’ve opted out, you can’t use [Street View] forever more. It allows people to become free riders.”


Paul Schwartz Cites Privacy Concerns if Personal Tax Info Publicized

The New York Times, February 13, 2010 by Anna Bernasek
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/14/business/yourtaxes/14disclose.html

In a 2008 paper, Paul M. Schwartz, a professor at the School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, concluded that tax returns would “increasingly be subject to the same kind of forces, legal and otherwise, as other personal information.”