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Roger Clarke's 'Big Data's Legal Implications'

Quality Factors in
Big Data and Big Data Analytics
and Their Legal Implications

Notes for a Presentation at a
Privacy Experts Symposium: Bigger Data in a Smaller World
Centre for Commercial Law (Bond Uni), AustLII, CLPCommunity (UNSW)
12 December 2014

Notes of 9 December 2014

Roger Clarke **

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The quality of inferences drawn from Big Data is dependent on a considerable array of quality factors relating to the underlying data, any scrubbing and matching procedures that are used, and the inferencing and decision processes applied to the data. The challenges presented by these quality factors is such that inferences drawn, and decisions made, on the basis of Big Data and Big Data Analytics have a high probability of being inappropriate, or downright wrong. This presentation highlights some key aspects of the challenges, and considers the extent to which organisations using Big Data are exposed to business risk.


Clarke R. (2014) 'Big Data, Big Risks' Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, September 2014, at

Clarke R. (2014b) 'Quality Factors in Big Data and Data Analytics' Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, September 2014, at

Wigan M.R. & Clarke R. (2013) 'Big Data's Big Unintended Consequences' IEEE Computer 46, 6 (June 2013) 46 - 53, at

Author Affiliations

Roger Clarke is Principal of Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, Canberra. He is also a Visiting Professor in the Cyberspace Law & Policy Centre at the University of N.S.W., and a Visiting Professor in the Research School of Computer Science at the Australian National University.

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Created: 9 December 2014 - Last Amended: 9 December 2014 by Roger Clarke - Site Last Verified: 15 February 2009
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