Cédric Laurant Talks about Current Challenges for Privacy and New Threats for Freedom of Expression (Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina – 8 June 2012)

"At a shop in Sarajevo's Bascarsija, or Turkish quarter." Shot in Sarajevo on 28 June 2011 by pirano Bob R.

“At a shop in Sarajevo’s Bascarsija, or Turkish quarter.” (Shot on 28 June 2011 by pirano Bob R.)

On 8-9 June 2012, NGO Internews, with the support of the Annenberg School for Communication of Pennsylvania University and USAID, organised a “Conference on Internet Governance, Policy and Regulation” in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina on 8 & 9 June 2012.

Several representatives from the Bosniak Minister of Communications, Communications Regulatory Authority, USAID and the Council of Europe assisted to the event, as well as from Bosniak NGOs working on freedom of expression issues and media organisations, together with international Internet governance, free speech and privacy experts from Europe and the United States.

Panels covered the issues of privacy, data protection and free speech in the digital age, online security, and Internet governance, policy and regulatory aspects.

1st panel on "Panel on Privacy in the digital age": Moderator Sevima Sali-Terzic and panelists Helena Mandic and Cédric Laurant

1st panel on “Panel on Privacy in the digital age”: Moderator Sevima Sali-Terzic; panelists Helena Mandic and Cédric Laurant

Cédric Laurant presented some of the current challenges that privacy and data protection represent for the defense of freedom of expression in Bosnia-Herzegovina.  His presentation was entitled “Retention and Online Search: How Current Challenges for Privacy Become New Threats for Freedom of Expression”.  It covered:

  1. how regulations in Europe mandating the retention of communications data – e.g., online traffic and mobile communications – on online service providers and telecommunications companies, affect users and consumers’ right to privacy and, as a result, their freedom of speech;
  2. how making a search online can trigger several consequences for Internet users, from their profiling by the online marketing industry, data aggregators and other online companies, to their characterization as a type of user fitting into diverse marketing or data mining categories, which in turn may affect their choices online as a consumer, computer user, individual or citizen;
  3. how the retention of data and new online behavioural marketing capabilities trigger various challenges for the privacy of Internet users;
  4. the articulation between privacy and freedom of speech; and
  5. various illustrations of how actual or hypothetical infringements to individuals’ privacy has led, or may lead, to a restriction of their freedom of expression.

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