Human Rights in the Digital Era: The Right to Privacy at Stake

Mahir Al Banna


The respect for fundamental human rights, including the right to privacy, is always invoked in opposition to the monitoring and social control techniques, but how rigorous and holistic analysis of the translation of these rights in a largely globalized and computerized world? Internet and new technologies: what remain of one’s privacy?

However, data-intensive technologies are helping to create a digital environment in which individuals, governments and commercial enterprises are increasingly able to keep up, to analyze, predict, and even manipulate people’s behavior to an unprecedented degree. If effective safeguards are not applied, these technological developments entail very significant risks for human dignity, autonomy, and privacy, as well as for the exercise of human rights in general.

The right to privacy is one of the fundamental pillars of human rights which finds its legal basis in international texts, inter-alia, the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), and the 1950 European convention of human rights (ECHR).

In accordance with the instructions of the relevant resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly and the Human Rights Council, have organized expert consultations and published reports to explore issues that threaten the right to privacy and other human rights in the digital age. The United Nations General Assembly adopted on December 16, 2020, a resolution in which it “reaffirms fundamental of the right to privacy and renews international commitments to ending all abuses and violation of this right worldwide.”

Keywords: Human rights – Right to Privacy - Digital technology – ICCPR – ECHR – Cyberspace

DOI: 10.7176/JAAS/80-08

Publication date:August 31st 2022

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