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Data Protection is Social Protection

7 Jun 2019

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  • Title: Data Protection is Social Protection
  • Author(S): Magadalena Sepúlveda
  • Date: 16 Apr 2019
  • Publication: Project Syndicate

Social-protection programs are supposed to do just what the name implies: protect those segments of society that are most in need. Demanding that beneficiaries effectively renounce their rights to personal privacy and data protection, as many governments are doing, amounts to just the opposite.

MEXICO CITY – In recent decades, social assistance programs around the world have been strengthened to the point that they now benefit more than 2.5 billion people, usually the poorest and most vulnerable. But rising pressure to apply biometric technology to verify beneficiaries’ identities, and to integrate information systems ranging from civil registries to law-enforcement databases, means that social programs could create new risks for those who depend on them.

Read the full article on Project Syndicate by UNRISD Senior Research Associate Magadalena Sepúlveda