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    Wall Street Journal: Privacy Expert Paul Ohm to Join FTC Targeting Web, Mobile

    The Wall Street Journal reports that University of Colorado law professor and privacy expert Paul Ohm is expected to join the Federal Trade Commission. Ohm has worked on the issue of “anonymization” and how it can fail to protect individuals’ privacy when the data can easily be “deanonymized” and linked back to an individual.

    Paul Ohm, a law professor and privacy expert at the University of Colorado, is expected to join the Federal Trade Commission in August as a senior policy adviser focusing on Internet and mobile markets, according to people familiar with the situation. […]

    Ohm is a former federal computer crimes prosecutor and an expert in information privacy. His 2010 paper, “Broken Promises: Responding to the Surprising Failure of Anonymization” sparked a global reassessment of privacy standards.

    Ohm is also a computer programmer and works to bridge connections between the law and computer science. His appointment is likely to bolster the agency’s technology staff, which is led by FTC Chief Technologist Ed Felten.

    At the Federal Trade Commission, he will advise the commissioners and staff on policy and enforcement cases. He will replace Columbia University professor Tim Wu, author of “The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires” who joined the FTC last year. […]

    In a statement, FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said: “Paul’s keen insights on how the law applies to technology and privacy issues will be invaluable to the FTC’s work in these areas.”

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