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New study: Ebola a big data disaster

Survey: The report “Ebola a big data disaster” by Sean Martin McDonald explores the use of Big Data in humanitarian crisis and the implications for privacy of some of the most vulnerable citizens of the world. In specific it questions the use of Call Detail Record (CDR) data in humanitarian crisis such as the Ebola outbreak to perform migration analysis and contact tracing without user consent, as well as the application of big data to disease surveillance.

Many humanitarian organizations actively encourage governments, charitable foundations, technology companies, and mobile networks to share data in ways that are illegal without user consent or the invocation of governmental emergency powers. McDonald argues that this leaves us is a world where the stretching and violation of national, regional, and
international human rights and data protection laws has become the norm.

Read the full study here