WSJ Data Transparency Code-a-Thon

What problem were we solving?

Web developers are often unaware of how their visitor's private data is used by their site partners. Understanding how that private data is used demands a specific set of skills, access to information on those site partners, and precious resources which could be invested elsewhere (time and money).

What we built:

A tool for website owners and developers to ensure their site manages private data appropriately and effectively: PrivacyScanner.

Users put in a URL, and we provide a report of the site partners' data collection activity, in multiple views. We provide a score for how well the site adheres to privacy best practices, and offer specific recommendations to improve the site.

Think Yslow, but for privacy.

We gather usher/collector relationships on a webpage, utilizing a shared "HAR-as-a-service" web services endpoint. We also include enhanced collector company data from PrivacyChoice and Krux, detailing risk of the associated companies found on the page.

Who benefits:

PrivacyScanner enables a novice web developer to apply privacy best practices (like the experts gathered at #WSJdata), easily!

Site visitors around the world will have their data managed more effectively and appropriately.

What is our sustainability model?
How do we license this?

Single page analyses will be free. Scaled research efforts will fund the service ongoing.

Contact: Nick Sullivan (

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