CDT Issues Report Recommending Privacy Guidelines for Digital Signage Industry

Washington — On Monday, the Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) released a report that includes a set of privacy recommendations for the rapidly growing digital signage industry.  The report focuses on the industry's adoption of identification and interactivity technologies such as facial recognition, mobile marketing, social networking, RFID tracking and license plate scanners.

The recommendations in CDT's report, "Building The Digital-Out-Of-Home Privacy Infrastructure," are based on the widely accepted Fair Information Practices (FIPs).

"Consumer privacy controls are essential for digital signage advertising to gain consumer trust," said Harley Geiger, CDT staff attorney and author of the report.  "That trust is crucial if the industry is to continue growing at its current explosive pace," Geiger said.  "Unless the industry adopts strong self-regulatory guidelines, it is likely to face consumer backlash and reactive government regulation that may stifle innovation."

The report's release coincided with last week's Digital Signage Expo 2010, the industry’s largest trade show.  CDT's report also comes on the heels of a preliminary set of industry best practices for privacy and security issued by POPAI, the international trade association for the marketing at-retail industry.  POPAI's Code of Conduct is an excellent starting point for the industry.  CDT’s report supplements the POPAI guidelines and joins the World Privacy Forum's (WPF) call for digital signage privacy policies based on the FIPs.

"Digital signage companies now have several good resources on privacy practices at their disposal," said Geiger.  "But it will only take a few bad apples that betray consumer privacy expectations to spoil the image of the whole industry."

The report is available online here.