TELUS program receives prestigious global privacy recognition
International Association of Privacy Professionals recognizes TELUS Data for Good program that helps officials stem the spread of COVID-19 while ensuring Canadians’ privacy
Toronto, Ontario – TELUS has been awarded the HPE-IAPP Privacy Innovation Award by the International Association of Privacy Professionals in recognition of its Data for Good program. Launched in April 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Data for Good leverages an advanced approach to de-identified data analytics to aid all levels of government and public agencies in making more strategic and informed decisions based on real-world information.
“We are extremely proud of the contribution TELUS has made to Canadians’ understanding of COVID-19 and our ability to measure many elements of the response to the pandemic,” said Pam Snively, Chief Data & Trust Officer at TELUS. “We believe that there is a very clear and strategic benefit to our society that can be achieved by using de-identified data to aid researchers in their efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19, and we are grateful for the IAPP’s recognition. This award is proudly shared by the many contributors to the Data for Good program.”
Data for Good makes it possible for health authorities and qualified academic researchers to use strongly de-identified data from TELUS Insights to measure progress and assess additional opportunities to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and “flatten the curve” without compromising the personal privacy of Canadians.
“The fact that we had been working for years on how to use data to solve problems without compromising the privacy of our customers meant that we could hit the ground running when COVID-19 first emerged,” said Michael Cihra, Vice President for Internet of Things at TELUS. “Adapting the TELUS Insights service to aid in predicting and measuring the impact of the virus was able to happen so quickly because we had already partnered with our Data and Trust team to address the fundamental questions about how to use data responsibly, and I think the value of that collaboration is reflected in the IAPP’s recognition of Data for Good.”
Using industry-leading privacy standards, TELUS Insights de-identifies customer information, combines it into large aggregated data sets to further ensure privacy, and then extrapolates this data to reveal trends and patterns about how devices move around the TELUS network. The extrapolation methodology takes a representative sample of the data and then models it to represent the total population.
“TELUS has invested in privacy, and our commitment to putting customers and their privacy first allowed us to have confidence in our platforms at a time when innovative solutions mattered most to our customers and to Canadians,” said Snively. “Our established strategy of approaching data use responsibly, while remaining rooted to our TELUS Trust Model, enabled the TELUS team to pivot and rapidly launch Data for Good to support the COVID-19 response. In the current moment, as we battle the second and third phases of the pandemic, this work has clearly taken on a new importance.”
In addition to being the only Canadian telecommunications company to receive the HPE-IAPP Privacy Innovation Award, TELUS is the only telecommunications company in Canada to achieve Privacy by Design Certification through the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB) for its Insights platform.
About TELUS TELUS (TSX: T, NYSE: TU) is a dynamic, world-leading communications and information technology company with $15.3 billion in annual revenue and 15.7 million customer connections spanning wireless, data, IP, voice, television, entertainment, video and security. We leverage our global-leading technology to enable remarkable human outcomes. Our longstanding commitment to putting our customers first fuels every aspect of our business, making us a distinct leader in customer service excellence and loyalty. TELUS Health is Canada's largest healthcare IT provider, and TELUS International delivers the most innovative business process solutions to some of the world’s most established brands. Driven by our passionate social purpose to connect all Canadians for good, our deeply meaningful and enduring philosophy to give where we live has inspired our team members and retirees to contribute more than $700 million and 1.3 million days of service since 2000. This unprecedented generosity and unparalleled volunteerism have made TELUS the most giving company in the world. For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com, follow us @TELUSNews on Twitter and @Darren_Entwistle on Instagram.
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