Dr. Sachiko Scheuing: bridging the gap between digital innovation and data privacy

TEDxAmsterdamWomen - Dr. Sachiko Scheuing

Dr. Sachiko Scheuing’s talk focused on a contemporary issue we’re all facing: online privacy.

“Do you know what one of the most important things is that we can teach our children? How to make good decisions. This is as true for kids as it is for all of us when dealing with privacy in this digital age.”

She explained that not many people realize that we’re actually living in the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The first was of course manufacturing, followed by the age of computers and then the internet. In this fourth revolution, the online and offline worlds are merging. We can monitor our own health with apps and personal AI (artificial intelligence) systems – a robot named Sophia was just granted citizenship (in Saudi Arabia)! Our bodies are merging with the internet, and this offers amazing opportunities. It also means that we need to make good decisions when it comes to privacy.

As laws like GDPR (AVG in the Netherlands) take center stage, the question is: are people really aware of what they’re consenting to? There is a need for a fresh approach to data protection. It’s not just something that we should leave in regulator’s hands.

Dr. Sachiko Scheuing encouraged the audience to make informed decisions, using her own two-step approach:

First, ask yourself if you can trust the app or AI assistant. Do some research! Second, be mindful. What do you really stand to gain by using this technology? Do the pros outweigh the potential cons? If you can answer yes to both of these questions, enjoy the benefits of the fourth industrial revolution!

Dr. Sachiko Scheuing is the Co-Chair of the Brussels-based trade association Federation of European Direct and Interactive Marketing (FEDMA) and European Privacy Officer for Acxiom. With more than 20 years’ experience in the field of marketing intelligence her work combines data ethics programs, government affairs, and compliance activities.