Jen Persson: Defend Digital Me

by Plutopia News Network
Photo of Jen Persson

Jen Persson is director of the UK Civil Liberties Group, Defend Digital Me.

She campaigns for a safe, fair, and transparent collection of children’s data in education and elsewhere.

What happens when you start collecting school records is that they’re about children, but those records age as the people do, and now we have a record of about a third of the UK population who have been in state education over the last 20 years. So anyone under 47 also has a national pupil record, and it is de facto becoming a go-to national identity database. It is something that other departments and even the police have started to use as how to find people. And that for me is a really concerning development and something that was foreseen and argued about 20 years ago. And I think any collection of data that is starting should be asking the same questions now about thinking about how they would be down the line. So that’s kind of one aspect of what we do is around government – state-collected information about children. And then we also look at things like technology that’s used in education, so things like biometrics, AI, apps, and platforms.

Jen is an advocate for digital privacy and human rights, is director of the digital privacy organization, Defend Digital Me. She writes about government plans to use personal data from education, health, and other parts of the public sector, for purposes beyond our reasonable expectations.

Relevant Links

danah boyd (research on teens online)

UN Declaration of the Rights of the Child

Sonia Livingstone

Center for Democracy and Technology

Electronic Frontier Foundation

Open Rights Group

Privacy International


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