Privacy and Data Protection in Turkey: (Inching) Towards a European Framework
Privacy & Security Law Report, October 2011
4 Pages Posted: 9 Oct 2011
Date Written: October 8, 2011
With a population of 73 million, second only to Germany when compared to the 27 European Union Member States, and a gross domestic product growth rate of 8 percent, Turkey is a force to be reckoned with on the outskirts of Europe. Turkey harbors the largest city in Europe (Istanbul, with an estimated population of 15 million); has 63 million mobile telephone subscribers; and is the fifth largest country in the world in terms of the number of Facebook users (after the United States, Indonesia, India, and the United Kingdom) with 30 million. Yet despite many years of political and public debate, Turkey remains without a comprehensive legal framework for privacy and data protection. Besides constituting an obstacle in Turkey’s quest to become a member of the European Union, the lack of a modern data protection law limits business opportunities and potential collaboration between Turkish and foreign businesses and law enforcement entities and compromises the fundamental rights of Turkish individuals. A data protection authority, established in the spirit of European regulatory agencies and empowered to enforce the law in all sectors of the economy as well as against the state, would correct this imbalance and propel the Turkish economy towards European standards.
Keywords: privacy, data protection, Turkey, constitutional, constitution, telecom
JEL Classification: K20, K23
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation