ICC Document & publication

ICC Privacy Toolkit – An international business guide for policymakers

ICC has launched the latest addition to the ICC Tools for E-Business, a series of booklets that disseminates policy models and best practices for the online world.

Privacy Toolkit: An international business guide for policymakers is aimed at governments seeking an innovative approach to privacy that balances the needs of governments, individuals and the economy as a whole. It outlines guiding principles for privacy that draw upon the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development privacy guidelines, and suggests practical ways to put the principles to work.

Balancing the values of individual privacy with the drive for an open and competitive economy is not about achieving a fixed and timeless legal solution. It’s an ongoing process that needs to be responsive to new technology, business methods and opportunities, and, above all, that actively engages all stakeholders.

Effective and appropriate privacy protection is a business enabler, not a barrier. It is a way to ensure consumer confidence and trust, and an enabler of lasting and fruitful customer relationships. Global business supports the use of a wide range of privacy enabling measures, and recognizes that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to privacy protection.

ICC has created this document with two purposes in mind: first, it can be used by national committees and members in discussions on privacy with their governments to ensure that any privacy regime adopted allows business and consumers to enjoy the benefits of privacy protection while at the same time enabling economic growth. Second, it can be used by ICC national committees to inform member companies about data protection law and other alternatives to managing privacy.

This Toolkit sets out the business context for privacy protection and describes the characteristics and benefits of optimal privacy protection regimes. ICC advocates consensus on principles for the use of personal data, and flexibility on the many mechanisms that can be used to apply these principles and ensure compliance. This Toolkit points out the potential adverse effects of relying too heavily on overly burdensome and legislation-centred approaches to privacy protection. It concludes with a set of action items for governments to promote appropriate and effective privacy protection regimes.