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NYC appoints its first chief privacy officer to safeguard data of citizens

New York City has taken the decision to appoint its very first CPO (chief privacy officer) who will be tasked with safeguarding the publicly held data of all the city's citizens.

Mayor Bill de Blasio formally announced the appointment of Laura Negron as New York's new CPO. In addition to safeguarding the data protection of its citizens, Negron will also be responsible of enhancing and coordinating citywide data-sharing practices and will attempt to improve how New York City interacts with and utilizes its data to inform responsible, equitable policies.

Negron will work with many city agencies and offices in order to promote new citywide protocols that relate to collection, disclosure and the retention of individually identifiable information. In addition, it has also been disclosed that she will provide guidance to agencies and attempt to streamline new policies and procedures within a centralized office.

Chair of NYC committee on technology, Peter Koo hailed the appointment and said it was critical for a city to guarantee the privacy and data protection of its residents.

Koo said, "As the exchange of information between governments and the public becomes more open and transparent, it is important that the city can guarantee privacy protections regarding personal information. We wish NYC's first chief privacy officer, Laura Negrón, great success in her pursuit of safeguarding the privacy and security of all New Yorkers."

In her previous role as general counsel and chief privacy officer for the mayor's office of operations, Negron was responsible for creating New York City's ‘citywide data integration legal framework' which established a citywide governance structure.

The framework has been hailed as a success and has been attributed with opening the door to leveraging creative solutions to share data safely while implementing important programs for New Yorkers, such as pre-K and 3-K enrolment outreach - and workforce common metrics initiatives.

It has been further disclosed that Negrón will continue to report directly to the acting director of the mayor's office of operations, Emily Newman. The size of the expanding privacy team is yet to be determined.

"I'm thrilled that Laura is being called upon to oversee a centralized effort to secure data in New York City," added Newman. "Laura has forged new paths in citywide data privacy strategy, finding ways to safely leverage data to offer more services to more New Yorkers, and leads the implementation of the city's internal privacy protocols. No one is more prepared to guide the city's data privacy strategy - New Yorkers are in good hands."