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Data Protection Law, Approaching its Rationale, Logic and Limits by Lee A. Bygrave

Data Protection Law, Approaching its Rationale, Logic and Limits

By Lee A. Bygrave


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Despite the proliferation of data protection laws (or privacy protection laws) in many countries, uncertainty still reigns as to who or what such laws actually protect. Most data protection laws seem to have been drawn up rather diffusely, with the justification that the huge variety of types of information and specific contexts give rise to a complexity that cannot be guessed at as information technology continues to develop.

Nevertheless, as this ground-breaking book demonstrates, it is essential to understand as best we can why data protection laws are passed, what their regulatory mechanisms are, and wherein lies their particular effectiveness.

Data Protection Law approaches such an analysis along three major avenues of investigation:

  • the interests and values that seem to be promoted by data protection laws;
  • the extent to which the processing of information on private collective entities should be regulated by these laws; and
  • the ability of these laws to control profiling practices.

    The author evaluates in detail the costs and/or gains and the interference (positive or negative) in the commercial, public administrative, and social spheres that data protection laws have the potential to create, with numerous references to legislation and administrative decision making in a wide variety of jurisdictions.

    This book promises to become a cornerstone in the new edifice of legal scholarship in this field. It will be of immense usefulness to lawyers, scholars, regulators and policymakers in this burgeoning area of the law.

    Review(s) Bygrave's book ...helps to get the big picture of some of the most important principles that are embodied in the various data protection rules existing in Europe. Bygrave takes on the ambitious task of confronting several issues that the academic world has had trouble coming to terms with, one of which is trying to bridge the concepts of data protection and privacy. [...] This book will be helpful for privacy scholars, regulators, policymakers, lawyers, and generally anyone who is interested in comparative privacy issues." Cedric Laurant, Electronic Privacy Information Centre, Washington, DC

    "The book makes an important contribution to the debate on data protection law as part of an evolving legal framework governing information and information systems. It is to be recommended." Dr Ian Walden, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary University of London

  • Pages 456
    Last Updated 08/01/2002
    Update Frequency As Needed
    Product Line Kluwer Law International
    ISBN 9789041198709
    SKU 10058983-0001
    Table of Contents
    1. Introduction
    2. Aims and Scope of Data Protection Laws
    3. Core Principles of Data Protection Laws
    4. Monitoring, Supervisory and Enforcement Regimes
    5. Concluding Observations for Part I
    6. Catalysts for Emergence of Data Protection Laws
    7. Values and Interests Safeguarded by Data Protection Laws
    8. Concluding Observations for Part II
    9. Background to Issue
    10. Existing Safeguards for Data on Collective Entities Pursuant to Data Protection Laws
    11. Consequences of Protecting Data on Collective Entities
    12. Data Protection Interests of Collective Entities
    13. Social, Economic and Political Factors
    14. Legal Factors
    15. Protection for Data on Non-organised Collective Entities
    16. Concluding Observations for Part III
    17. Profiling as Practice and Problem
    18. Regulation of Profiling
    19. Concluding Remarks on Part IV
    20. Conclusion