Big Data Blacklisting

78 Pages Posted: 11 Feb 2016

See all articles by Margaret Hu

Margaret Hu

Penn State Law and School of International Affairs

Date Written: February 1, 2016


“Big data blacklisting” is the process of categorizing individuals as administratively “guilty until proven innocent” by virtue of suspicious digital data and database screening results. Database screening and digital watchlisting systems are increasingly used to determine who can work, vote, fly, etc. In a big data world, through the deployment of these big data tools, both substantive and procedural due process protections may be threatened in new and nearly invisible ways. Substantive due process rights safeguard fundamental liberty interests. Procedural due process rights prevent arbitrary deprivations by the government of constitutionally protected interests. This Article frames the increasing digital mediation of rights and privileges through government-led big data programs as a constitutional harm under substantive due process, and identifies the obstruction of core liberties.

Keywords: Core Liberties, Database Screening, Digital Data, Digital Mediation of Rights and Privileges, Digital Watchlisting Systems, Due Process Protections, Procedural Due Process, Substantive Due Process

JEL Classification: K00, K10

Suggested Citation

Hu, Margaret, Big Data Blacklisting (February 1, 2016). Florida Law Review, Vol. 67, 2015, Washington & Lee Legal Studies Paper No. 2016-4, Available at SSRN:

Margaret Hu (Contact Author)

Penn State Law and School of International Affairs ( email )

Lewis Katz Building
University Park, PA 16802
United States

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