Britain's Smart Meter Programme: A Case Study in Privacy by Design
14 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2013
Date Written: February 12, 2013
Following requirements in the 1996 EU Energy Efficiency Directive, member states are developing programmes to encourage the installation of “smart” power meters that record much larger quantities of data about power usage than traditional meters. This data can reveal a great deal of information about individual household activity, leading privacy regulators to call for privacy to be “designed in” to these systems. The British smart metering programme has given some attention to privacy by design. This article assesses the effectiveness of this process, finding that decisions made early in the programme had negative privacy impacts that have only been partially remedied by the later development of detailed rules on the processing of smart meter data by energy suppliers and distributors. The article also considers the lessons of this case for the privacy by design approach.
Keywords: data protection, technology regulation, energy efficiency
JEL Classification: K23, l15, l23, l52, l94, l95, l96, O33, O38
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
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By Ian Brown