EFF Releases Updated White Paper on Best Practices for Online Service Providers
Today EFF released a revised white paper on Best Practices for Online Service Providers, an update of the 2004 OSP Best Practices white paper. In the white paper, EFF offers some suggestions, both legal and technical, for the best privacy practices for collecting, storing and disclosing data that balance the needs of OSPs and their users' privacy and civil liberties.
OSPs are vital links between their users and the Internet, offering bandwidth, email, web, and other Internet services. In the process of offering services, OSPs collect and store detailed information about their users and their user's online activities.
User information can be of great interest to the government and civil litigants, leading to numerous requests from law enforcement and lawyers to hand over private user information and logs. Yet, compliance with these demands takes away from an OSP's goal of providing users with reliable, secure network services.
In the OSP Best Practices white paper, we offer information for OSPs in order to help them make sound, ethical decisions about how to safeguard private data and preserve freedom of expression online.
Summary of Recommendations
- Develop procedures for dealing with legal information requests and providing notice to users.
- Collect the minimum amount of information necessary to provide OSP services.
- Store information for the minimum time necessary for operations.
- Effectively obfuscate, aggregate and delete unneeded user information.
- Maintain written policies addressing data collection and retention.
- Enable SSL as much as possible throughout your site to secure users’ information and communications.
- Understand threats to the security of sensitive information and communications on your systems, and mitigate them appropriately.
- Insist that the OSPs and other service providers you work with observe these best practices, too.
OSPs can face many other legal issues beyond user privacy, from DMCA takedown requests to defamation claims to issues with adult materials. While these are outside the scope of the OSP Best Practices paper, EFF recommends that OSPs review the EFF Bootcamp materials, which provides the basics on a number of key legal issues for Web 2.0 companies. We also recommend reading EFF’s Legal Guide for Bloggers, which provides a basic roadmap to the legal issues one may confront as an online publisher.
Recent DeepLinks Posts
Oct 2, 2015
Oct 2, 2015
Oct 2, 2015
Oct 2, 2015
Oct 1, 2015
- Fair Use and Intellectual Property: Defending the Balance
- Free Speech
- Know Your Rights
- Trade Agreements and Digital Rights
- State-Sponsored Malware
- Abortion Reporting
- Analog Hole
- Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement
- Bloggers' Rights
- Broadcast Flag
- Broadcasting Treaty
- Cell Tracking
- Coders' Rights Project
- Computer Fraud And Abuse Act Reform
- Content Blocking
- Copyright Trolls
- Council of Europe
- Cyber Security Legislation
- Defend Your Right to Repair!
- Development Agenda
- Digital Books
- Digital Radio
- Digital Video
- DMCA Rulemaking
- Do Not Track
- E-Voting Rights
- EFF Europe
- Encrypting the Web
- Export Controls
- FAQs for Lodsys Targets
- File Sharing
- Fixing Copyright? The 2013-2015 Copyright Review Process
- Genetic Information Privacy
- Hollywood v. DVD
- How Patents Hinder Innovation (Graphic)
- International Privacy Standards
- Internet Governance Forum
- Law Enforcement Access
- Legislative Solutions for Patent Reform
- Locational Privacy
- Mandatory Data Retention
- Mandatory National IDs and Biometric Databases
- Mass Surveillance Technologies
- Medical Privacy
- National Security and Medical Information
- National Security Letters
- Net Neutrality
- No Downtime for Free Speech
- NSA Spying
- Offline : Imprisoned Bloggers and Technologists
- Online Behavioral Tracking
- Open Access
- Open Wireless
- Patent Busting Project
- Patent Trolls
- PATRIOT Act
- Pen Trap
- Policy Analysis
- Public Health Reporting and Hospital Discharge Data
- Reading Accessibility
- Real ID
- Search Engines
- Search Incident to Arrest
- Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
- Social Networks
- SOPA/PIPA: Internet Blacklist Legislation
- Student and Community Organizing
- Stupid Patent of the Month
- Surveillance and Human Rights
- Surveillance Drones
- Terms Of (Ab)Use
- Test Your ISP
- The "Six Strikes" Copyright Surveillance Machine
- The Global Network Initiative
- The Law and Medical Privacy
- TPP's Copyright Trap
- Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
- Travel Screening
- Trusted Computing
- Video Games