Wednesday, 7 February 2018

The quest for Big Data

Scottish kids are being taught to behave like performing seals:

"There is a furious row in Scotland just now about data gathering and information sharing."

"FOI requests have revealed that Police Scotland are running a Vulnerable Persons Database. If the Police think your 'well-being' is at risk then your details are added to the database so you can be monitored. There are, so far, 800,000 people on this database out of a population of 5.2 million – 15 % of the population."

"None of these have been asked if they want this attention from the Police and none were informed. In setting up this database they ignored a recent Supreme Court judgement that said the stockpiling of such data was illegal. They have, in another context, actually now admitted sharing data illegally..."

"Set up with the creation of Police Scotland in 2013, the system aims to provide a `holistic` approach to child and adult protection."

"It involves collating disparate pieces of information about a particular vulnerable individual into a single file - allowing officers to build a narrative about that person."

"At a supervisor's discretion, the file can be shared with other government bodies - for example health, social work or education - so that the person receives support..."

"Police Scotland has no policy for removing or weeding data from the VPD when it is no longer applicable - which the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said breached the Data Protection Act."

"Det Ch Insp Conway said this was because the VPD was set up as an interim resource, which is now being used beyond its intended lifespan."

"England has a National Pupil database which started out as an anonymous statistical tool on school performance. It now holds over 20 million highly detailed records on named children who are not informed how their personal data may be used, for what purposes, and by whom. And, yes, they sell the data to commercial entities."

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