Global Trends in Privacy Protection: An International Survey of Privacy, Data Protection, and Surveillance Laws and Developments


David Banisar & Simon Davies


VOL. XVIII • Fall 1999 • NO. 1 (table of contents)

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The right to privacy is one of the most fundamental rights recognized. References to privacy date back to ancient Greece and China. Rapid advances in information technology and high-speed data networks have had an enormous impact on privacy. Today, personal medical and financial information can easily be transmitted with and without the one knowing. Can privacy law keep up with these changes and challenges? Privacy advocates are concerned.

Nearly every country in the world has some form of privacy provision in its constitution. However, the definition of privacy differs from context and environment. The authors chronicle the status of privacy law in 53 countries. As guidance, the authors break down privacy into four sub-categories: information privacy, bodily privacy, privacy of communications, and territorial privacy. Their analysis presents an insightful foray into the different ways that right privacy is viewed and protected around the world.

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