Public vs. Nonpublic Data
De-identification is a process used to prevent a person’s identity from being connected with information. Organizations de-identify data for a range of reasons. Companies may have promised “anonymity” to individuals before collecting their personal information, data protection laws may restrict the sharing of personal data, and, perhaps most importantly, companies de-identify data to mitigate privacy threats from improper internal access or from an external data breach. This Essay attempts to frame the conversation around de-identification.