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Terry Gerton, President & CEO of NAPA, and Jason Briefel, executive director of the Senior Executives Association, discuss efforts to ensure government data security, and how agencies can work to maintain privacy of the citizens they serve.

The Federal Data Strategy Action Plan calls for a data protection toolkit by the end of 2020. Terry Gerton, President & CEO of NAPA, says that ensuring ethical data practices is paramount.

“We as people tend to make a bargain with our retail providers where we trade privacy for convenience. But we don’t seem willing to make that same bargain with the government, so that the government can use data to make public services more convenient,” Gerton said. “The principles that are inside the Federal Data Strategy are all about building and sustaining public trust.  The concepts around ethical governance are really important to help people know the government promises to be an important steward of that kind of data.”

 

Jason Briefel, executive director of the Senior Executives Association, says that agencies are at different stages of maturity when it comes to data, and need to be equally knowledgeable on privacy practices.

 

“One of the things that SEA expressed on the draft of the Federal Data Strategy is the importance of baseline literacy around these topics, both about data itself, but privacy, security, ethics. Every federal employee needs to know about these things, so they don’t think it’s someone else’s job. It is everyone’s job to ensure that we’re using the taxpayer information appropriately,” Briefel said.

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