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Report: The humanitarian metadata problem - Doing no harm in the digital era

A migrant makes a call with the help of a member of the Italian Red Cross outside the 'Tracing Bus', a mobile office giving people the opportunity to re-establish a link with their families, in Rome, 6 March 2017
A migrant makes a call with the help of a member of the Italian Red Cross outside the 'Tracing Bus', a mobile office giving people the opportunity to re-establish a link with their families, in Rome, 6 March 2017

ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP/Getty Images

This statement was originally published on privacyinternational.org on 11 December 2018.

New technologies continue to present great risks and opportunities for humanitarian action. To ensure that their use does not result in any harm, humanitarian organisations must develop and implement appropriate data protection standards, including robust risk assessments.

However, this requires a good understanding of what these technologies are, what risks are associated with their use, and how we can try to avoid or mitigate them. This joint report by Privacy International and the International Committee of the Red Cross aims to provide people who work in the humanitarian sphere with the knowledge they need to understand the risks involved in the use of certain new technologies. It also discusses the "do no harm" principle and how it applies in a digital environment.

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