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Winners Dutch Privacy Awards 2020 announced!

At Privacy First and ECP's National Privacy Conference today, on European Privacy Day, the Dutch Privacy Awards awarded. The winners of the 2020 Dutch Privacy Awards are Publicroam, NUTS and Candle.

Winner: Publicroam

Secure and convenient Wi-Fi access everywhere as a guest

At the library, in a coffee shop, a hotel, most people log on to the local WiFi network. Because the mobile data networks don't work well everywhere indoors and because your subscription will be consumed less quickly. Often, those WiFis work with one local password, which is on all tables or screens. This makes your digital activities vulnerable in several ways, with all the nasty consequences this can have. Moreover, you don't know what the providers of those networks do with your personal data. It has been said that, meanwhile, personal data trading makes more money than oil trading.

Educational institutions were the first to recognise these risks, followed later by the public sector. This is how Eduroam and Govroam were created earlier. But why not just for everyone and everywhere? That idea was taken up by Publicroam and is falling on fertile ground in more and more places. And rightly so, is the jury's opinion. Several large municipalities and organisations (such as all libraries in our country) are already connected or will soon connect. In itself, then, this facility is not an entirely new solution, but the jury is particularly impressed because the facility can offer major advantages for literally everyone in our country - and possibly beyond - and thus have a major impact on what we are used to: one account and with all participants automatically and securely online, with serious respect for privacy.

So it is possible: good business initiatives and still respect privacy, see the proof here.

Winner: NUTS

Decentralised infrastructure for privacy-friendly healthcare communications

NUTS Foundation is an initiative that aims to provide a privacy-friendly solution for identity management and personal data sharing in healthcare. The initiative involves individuals retaining control over what healthcare data may be shared by healthcare providers with other healthcare providers. NUTS Foundation has set out its principles in a Manifesto to be endorsed by participants, and any software developed must meet open source requirements. The result that NUTS Foundation aims for is a decentralised architecture that keeps control and authority over personal data in healthcare with those involved.

The services provided over the decentralised network are based on the principles of privacy by design. Identity management solutions help to conclusively prove the identity of the individual. The decentralised approach is in line with the healthcare architecture currently under development - and already partly rolled out - in healthcare. This allows the healthcare information building blocks to use the decentralised facilities realised through NUTS.

For the jury, foundation NUTS is a fine example of an initiative that looks at privacy issues in a comprehensive way and also realises concrete solutions for them. The open source community that the NUTS foundation is realising prevents vendor lock-in on crucial parts of the healthcare infrastructure. The emerging Personal Health Environments can also make use of the decentralised management facilities that NUTS is pursuing. The idea behind NUTS - creating a utility for a crucial part of healthcare architecture - particularly appealed to the jury. Broadening the Foundation, which is now largely supported by one company, will further increase support for the initiative.

Therefore, to enable the NUTS Foundation to further realise and propagate its ideals more widely, the jury awards this year's jury prize for business solutions to NUTS Foundation.

Winner: Candle

Privacy-friendly smart home solution

Candle is a response to a risk assessment (privacy by design) of IoT products that connect to a cloud server without the need for it. It is a project aimed at developing alternative smart systems in and around the home, with the basis that no connection to the internet is necessary. It started as a project organisation with students from university, college and artist collectives aimed at developing practical hardware solutions combined with open source software. For instance, various household appliances such as the central heating, cameras, a CO2 sensor and other applications can be easily connected. A switch is used to connect to an external network. As a user, you make a conscious choice about when to bring in and send out mail and other data.

Candle shows that it is easily possible to create a Smart solution without the Big Tech companies with their data-driven models. Meanwhile, there are several concept solutions that can actually be put into practice by companies. Candle is at its core privacy by design and opens eyes to alternative smart systems.

"Just as the market for organic food has grown tremendously, so will the market for ethical technology. But how do you fuel that market? That's the challenge. The AVG has ploughed the ground. Now it is time to sow and get the concept to consumers," Candle said.


There are four categories for which entries could be nominated:

  1. Consumer Solutions category (from businesses for consumers)
  2. category Business solutions (within a company or business-to-business)
  3. category Public services (from government for citizens)
  4. Incentive award for a pioneering technology or person.

From the various entries, the independent expert jury had determined the following nominees for each category:

Consumer solutions

  • Publicroam
  • Candle
  • Skotty

Business solutions

  • NUTS
  • Rabobank/Deloitte

During the National Privacy Conference all nominees presented their projects to the public through Award pitches. The awards were then presented. Click  here for the entire jury report (pdf) with participation criteria and explanation of all nominees and winners.

Jury Dutch Privacy Awards

The Awards jury consists of independent privacy experts from various sectors:

  • Bas Filippini, founder and chairman Privacy First
  • Paul Korremans, partner Comfort-IA; data protection officer; also board member Privacy First
  • Marie-José Bonthuis, owner IT's Privacy
  • Esther Janssen, lawyer Information Law and Fundamental Rights, Brandeis office
  • Marc van Lieshout, managing director iHub, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Melanie Rieback, CEO and co-founder Radically Open Security
  • Nico Mookhoek, privacy lawyer and owner NMLA
  • Wilmar Hendriks, founder Control Privacy (also member Advisory Board Privacy First)
  • Alex Commandeur, senior consultant BMC Advice.

To ensure that the election of the Awards is objective, the jury is not allowed to judge an entry from its own organisation.

Privacy First organises the Dutch Privacy Awards with support from Democracy & Media Foundation, in collaboration with ECP.

Would you like to become a sponsor of the Dutch Privacy Awards? Then please contact on with Privacy First!

Dutch Privacy Award
Dutch Privacy Award