The ABC continues to ignore requests from the Australian Privacy Foundation to clarify details of access to its iview service which now requires a mandatory login, says the APF.
In a statement on Sunday, the APF said the ABC had not yet addressed outstanding issues, “particularly on the proper disclosure of their apparent intent to export iview account usage data at the level individualized and ineffectively anonymized to foreign third-party commercial surveillance companies like Tealium, Google and Facebook”.
The body of privacy originally raised these problems with the ABC in March and monitoring in April.
Like iTWire reported that after a waiting period following the announcement that iview logins would be made mandatory in March, the ABC, which is entirely taxpayer-funded, used credentials mandatory during the federal election campaign.
Security researcher Dr Vanessa Teague, who runs her own company Thinking Cybersecurity, has illustrated the extent at which iView user data is being diverted to commercial companies, using a video in March.
Although the ABC initially said it would allow those who did not want their data sent to these companies to opt out, this feature has not been implemented.
APF President David Vaile and Vice President Dr Juanita Fernando said in Sunday’s statement: “Dr Teague’s analysis suggested that the weak efforts to anonymize users of the iview account in “hashing” their email address into the export data would fall on the first serious attempt when re-identifying, especially if the recipient has a lot of potentially matching data (as is the case here)”.
The ABC sent answer to the APF’s first letter, but has since maintained a stoic public silence after the privacy body followed up with further questions. A response marked “Private” was sent to the second request.
“[The] ABC now appears to have closed the door to further consultation after a brief and inconclusive response, refusing to clarify factual questions about this practice or address unresolved related issues,” Vaile and Dr. Fernando said.
Vaile pointed to the inherent hypocrisy of ABC reporters who often investigate and write about the breach of privacy and the company’s silence on its own data use policies.
“iview usage data may be intended for routine disclosure to data aggregators and marketing companies with a history of privacy abuse,” Vaile said.
“If iview’s consents were invalid due to failure to provide appropriate disclosure about these practices, data recipients and their implications and risks, then iview’s operation may be in breach of privacy law. private life.”
Vaile and Fernando said that unless these issues are resolved, users concerned about data security and privacy may need to reconsider using iview or adopt defensive measures such as email addresses. “engraved” or the massive sharing of accounts.
“It is unfortunate that a flagship utility, ostensibly ‘our’ ABC, one that the community expects to promote best practices, safe and reliable computing and full disclosure, leaves the facts and issues unresolved policies, placing self-respecting users in an abhorrent position,” they added.
The ABC was contacted for comment, but did not respond.