Toward Informational Privacy Rights
38 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2012 Last revised: 6 Mar 2018
Date Written: 2007
In this paper I will offer several arguments in support of the view that individuals have moral claims to control personal information. Coupled with rights to control access to one's body, capacities, and powers, or physical privacy rights, we will have taken important steps toward a general right to privacy. In Part I, a definition of privacy is offered along with an account of the value of privacy. Simply put, privacy - defined as control over access to locations and information - is necessary for human well-being. In Part II, an attempt to move beyond claims of value to claims of obligation is presented and defended. Policies that sanction the capturing, storing, and trading of personal information about others is something we each have reasons to avoid. In the final part, the tension between privacy and security is considered. It is argued that privacy rights may be set aside only if specific procedural conditions are followed.
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