TED Talk

Check Other Resources

Data is an industry. Our data is a multi-billion dollar industry. They don’t call it Big Data for nothing!

Data is also a key to unlocking medical mysteries and finding cures for diseases that have plagued generations. We have all of this information at our fingertips, but we can only use a fraction of it.

Privacy laws have been put in place to protect the individuals generating this data – and rightly so – but antiquated approaches to protecting privacy results in a diluted, less effective version of the original data.

However, protecting privacy and maximizing the benefits from using Big Data do not have to be at odds.

We have barely scratched the surface of how our society can benefit from maximizing the full potential of Big Data, but that is about to change.

Data is everywhere. Every time we do an internet search, every time we buy something at the grocery store, every time we see the doctor, we are generating data.

The accumulation of all of this information, generated by billions of people around the world, is Big Data.

The collection and analysis of Big Data already allows us to predict the weather, tell us what movies we’ll like and even tell doctors and pharmaceutical companies which strain of flu they need to vaccinate against this year. But it could do so much more.

Vice President Biden has challenged all of us around the world to put all of our resources into finding a cure for cancer. He has called this the “Moonshot for Cancer". The biggest hurdle when accepting the Vice President’s call to action is that the billions of bits of data that have been collected by doctors and scientists around the globe—like lab tests, health histories, a record of the medications people take, -- sit in silos and cannot be analyzed as a whole.

Why? One of the biggest reasons is that hospitals and cancer centers are hesitant to share information because the current approaches to privacy can create liability concerns.

My colleagues and I have spent the past 4 years studying how to unlock the promise and true value of Big Data. We asked “what if…? “What if we could enable data to be used more freely to achieve its highest possible value while still protecting privacy? What would that do for the medical world? What would that do for data as a business? We spoke with experts around the world. Four years and four patents later we have a solution – we call it BigPrivacy.

BigPrivacy® infuses both privacy and security into data so that it is protected by default to minimize liability while retaining the full use of the data.

You may have heard of something called Digital Rights Management or DRM. DRM uses technology to limit copies that you can make of music or movies you've purchased. BigPrivacy® is like standing DRM on its head - instead of a company telling you what copies you can make of their data, it enables a trusted enterprise on your behalf to control what copies and uses are made of your data.

Instead of DRM - think of it as PRM or Privacy Rights Management. It provides technology enforced privacy controls over who can make use of your data in a way that maximizes the value of the data without compromising privacy.

The benefit of infusing privacy and security into the data is that controlled sharing of highly personal and restricted data is made possible while protecting the privacy of individuals and minimizing risks.

The same way that iTunes, Netflix and Spotify revolutionized digital media, BigPrivacy® can revolutionize digital privacy. This breakthrough could propel the “Moonshot for Cancer", facilitate untold other discoveries and unlock the full value of data.