Privacy Interest Group Charter

This charter has been replaced by a newer version.

The mission of the Privacy Interest Group, part of the Privacy Activity, is to improve the support of privacy in Web standards by monitoring ongoing privacy issues that affect the Web, investigating potential areas for new privacy work, and providing guidelines and advice for addressing privacy in standards development.

Join the Privacy Interest Group.

End date 30 September 2019
Confidentiality Proceedings are public
Chairs Christine Runnegar, Internet Society
Tara Whalen, Google
Initial Team Contact
(FTE %: 10)
Sam Weiler
Usual Meeting Schedule Teleconferences: Monthly
Face-to-face: Once annually


In order to improve the support of privacy in Web standards, the Privacy Interest Group (PING) will broadly investigate ongoing Web privacy issues and methods of systematically addressing privacy concerns during the standardization process.

The group will consider and discuss any privacy issues that affect users of the Web. This may include, but is not limited to, issues related to: online tracking; location, health and financial data; eGovernment initiatives; and online social networking and identity. Where appropriate, the Interest Group will recommend areas where W3C should begin recommendation-track standards work on privacy issues and may prototype or initiate such work within the group.

Additionally, the Interest Group will develop and document guidelines, patterns, processes and best practices for addressing privacy considerations in Web standards. The Interest Group may provide a locus of expertise to help consider (proactively or reactively) privacy issues that arise in other W3C standards work.

Success Criteria


The group may publish documents like the following that are consistent with the above scope. The titles of the documents are indicative only.

Other Deliverables

The Interest Group may also publish analyses of potential privacy issues (to provide greater awareness or architectural suggestions), prototype specifications for new privacy areas, guidelines for user interface design or other similar documents.

Dependencies and Liaisons

W3C Groups

It is expected that many newly-chartered Working and Interest Groups will liaise with the Privacy Interest Group to faciliate privacy reviews of new work. The static list below is, therefore, incomplete.

Device APIs Working Group
Access to potentially-sensitive data or control of mobile devices is a particular area of privacy concern.
Geolocation Working Group
The Privacy Interest Group is likely to monitor and review the privacy outcomes of Geolocation specifications.
Tracking Protection Working Group
The Privacy Interest Group is likely to monitor and review the privacy outcomes of Tracking Protection specifications.
Web Accessibility Initiative Protocols and Formats Working Group
Experience from the Web Accessibility Initiative may be useful for understanding the best way to address cross-cutting values throughout many specifications.
Web Applications Working Group
The Privacy Interest Group may review or provide advice on privacy issues in Web Applications specifications.
Web Notification Working Group
The Privacy Interest Group may review or provide advice on privacy issues in Web Notification specifications.
Web Security Interest Group
The Privacy Interest Group may work with the Web Security Interest Group on guidance on privacy and security issues and coordination of reviews of specifications.
Web Application Security Working Group
The Privacy Interest Group may consult with, or review the work of, the Web Application Security Working Group on privacy and security issues, particularly with cross-site communications.
Technical Architecture Group
The Privacy Interest Group may consult with the Technical Architecture Group on privacy issues common across Web architecture.

External Groups

Internet Architecture Board Privacy and Security Program
The Interest Group will share experiences with the IAB Privacy and Security Program which is considering systematic improvements to privacy and security in IETF standards.


Participation in the Privacy Interest Group is open to the public. Participants who do not represent a W3C Member should join as Invited Experts. Invited Experts in this group are not granted access to Member-only information.

Anyone (participating in the group or not) may subscribe to the group's public mailing list and engage in discussion. Those who intend to contribute to deliverables will be asked to join the group.

The Chairs may call occasional meetings consistent with the W3C Process requirements for meetings.


This group primarily conducts its work on the public mailing list public-privacy.

Information about the group (deliverables, participants, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, etc.) is available from the Privacy Activity home page.

Decision Policy

As explained in the Process Document (section 3.3), this group will seek to make decisions when there is consensus. When the Chairs put a question and observe dissent, after due consideration of different opinions, the Chairs should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote) and any objections, and move on.

Patent Disclosures

The Privacy Interest Group provides an opportunity to share perspectives on the topic addressed by this charter. W3C reminds Interest Group participants of their obligation to comply with patent disclosure obligations as set out in Section 6 of the W3C Patent Policy. While the Interest Group does not produce Recommendation-track documents, when Interest Group participants review Recommendation-track specifications from Working Groups, the patent disclosure obligations do apply.

For more information about disclosure obligations for this group, please see the W3C Patent Policy Implementation.

About this Charter

This charter for the Privacy Interest Group has been created according to section 6.2 of the Process Document. In the event of a conflict between this document or the provisions of any charter and the W3C Process, the W3C Process shall take precedence.

On 28 June 2019, this charter was extended until 30 September 2019.

On 21 December 2018, this charter was extended until 30 June 2019.

On 1 March, 2018, this charter was extended to 31 December 2018 with an update to the team contact.

On 3 December 2014, this charter was extended to 1 December 2016, with the following adjustments:

On 18 December 2013, this charter was extended to 1 December 2014, with the following additional adjustments:

Sam Weiler, W3C

$Date: 2019/10/07 18:43:56 $