The UN Should Adopt Data Protection Convention 108 as a Global Treaty: Submission on ‘The Right to Privacy in the Digital Age’ to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, to the Human Rights Council, and to the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy
5 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2018 Last revised: 13 Jul 2018
Date Written: April 9, 2018
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has invited submissions on ‘the right to privacy in the digital age’. This submission argues that:
(i) Data privacy laws have been enacted globally (now by 124 countries), with average standards closer to the higher ‘European’ (2nd generation) standards than to the lower OECD (1st generation) standards.
(ii) Data protection Convention 108 is an open convention, to which any country can apply to accede, not only European countries. Such ‘globalisation’ of Convention 108 has been actively encouraged by the Council of Europe since 2010, with positive results, and 56 UN members will soon be parties to it. It is the only global data protection convention that has any practical prospects of being developed and adopted.
(iii) The single best and most effective strategy that the United Nations can adopt to strengthen ‘national legislative and regulatory frameworks concerning the collection, processing, retention or use of personal data’ (as the call for submissions puts it), is to develop a package of measures to align UN policies with data protection Convention 108. Seven specific measures are recommended to create such an alignment.
Keywords: privacy, data protection, international law, council of europe, convention 108, United Nations, UN
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation