The Fordham Center on Law and Information Policy (CLIP) at Fordham Law School and the Commons Lab of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars have issued a report titled “Privacy and Missing Persons after Natural Disasters,” prepared as part of a joint project. The report is available for free download at: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2229610 (no registration required) and http://www.scribd.com/collections/3840667/Commons-Lab-Science-and-Technology-Innovation-Program-STIP
“With this project, Fordham CLIP is trying to help the people and organizations assisting in the location of missing persons recognize and deal with critical privacy issues by providing a range of options to address the legal and policy concerns,” said Joel R. Reidenberg, the academic director of Fordham CLIP and a co-author of the report. Robert Gellman, a privacy expert and co-author of the report, added, “Missing persons services are essential following natural disasters, but they can raise questions about how privacy laws apply to emergency humanitarian responses. The report suggests ways to resolve those questions.”
The project is part of an international effort led by the Missing Persons Community of Interest (MPCI) that is seeking to harmonize a wide array of databases and technologies to enhance searches for missing persons following natural disasters. MPCI, which emerged in response to the 2010 Haitian earthquake, includes participants from local disaster management, international humanitarian relief organizations, private sector technology companies, non-profits, and digital volunteer communities.
The project was supported by the Wilson Center and a gift made by Fordham University alumnus and trustee Ed Stroz and his digital risk management company, Stroz Friedberg.