Sep 23–26, 2019

War Stories from the Front Lines of ML

Andrew Burt (Immuta), Brenda Leong (Future of Privacy Forum)
1:15pm1:55pm Wednesday, September 25, 2019
Location: 1E 14
Secondary topics:  Ethics, Privacy and Security

Who is this presentation for?

Data scientists, data and privacy engineers, privacy officers, anyone managing a technical team



Prerequisite knowledge

An interest in learning about real life lessons about deploying ML!

What you'll learn

Concrete lessons, from major organizations, into how to address risks and shortcomings of deploying machine learning systems and technologies.


This September, Immuta and the Future of Privacy Forum will release a new version of their 2018 Beyond Explainability whitepaper, focused on privacy and security in machine learning and advanced analytics. (The original whitepaper can be accessed here: In this session, in conjunction with the release of their new paper, Immuta and FPF will convene leading industry representatives and experts to present their experiences from the front lines, discussing real life examples of when ML goes wrong and the lessons they learned.

These practical lessons will help you utilize the full power of ML technologies while understanding, and responsibly managing, their potential risks and failures. Ultimately, you will learn to view these shortcomings, and the ability to properly address them, as part of the necessary cycle of oversight and transparency – and as key to these systems’ long-term success.

Photo of Andrew Burt

Andrew Burt


Andrew Burt is chief privacy officer and legal engineer at Immuta, the data management platform for the world’s most secure organizations. He is also a visiting fellow at Yale Law School’s Information Society Project. Previously, Andrew was a special advisor for policy to the head of the FBI Cyber Division, where he served as lead author on the FBI’s after-action report on the 2014 attack on Sony. The leading authority on the intersection between machine learning, regulation and law, Andrew has published articles on technology, history, and law in the New York Times, the Financial Times, Slate, and the Yale Journal of International Affairs. His book, American Hysteria: The Untold Story of Mass Political Extremism in the United States, was called “a must-read book dealing with a topic few want to tackle” by Nobel laureate Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. Andrew holds a JD from Yale Law School and a BA from McGill University. He is a term-member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a member of the Washington, DC, and Virginia State Bars and a Global Information Assurance Certified (GIAC) cyber incident response handler.

Brenda Leong

Future of Privacy Forum

Brenda Leong, CIPP/US, is Senior Counsel and Director of Strategy at the Future of Privacy Forum. She oversees strategic planning of organizational goals, as well as managing the FPF portfolio on biometrics, particularly facial recognition, along with the ethics and privacy issues associated with artificial intelligence. She works on industry standards and collaboration on privacy concerns, by partnering with stakeholders and advocates to reach practical solutions to the privacy challenges for consumer and commercial data uses. Prior to working at FPF, Brenda served in the U.S. Air Force, including policy and legislative affairs work from the Pentagon and the U.S. Department of State. She is a 2014 graduate of George Mason University School of Law.

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