People do care about their privacy

2015 / 10 / 16 Tags:

“Our research shows that the right to privacy is considered one of the most vulnerable. People are concerned about their privacy, but what can they do to better protect it?”. Natalija Bitiukova of HRMI says that even though individuals can file complaints to data protection authorities, penalties for privacy violations are low – only up to 579 EUR.

Whilst speaking at the conference “The Borderline between Cybersecurity and Individual Freedoms”, HRMI’s Legal Director pointed out that it is a myth that people do not care about their privacy – they simply lack information of the ways their privacy can potentially be infringed.

“In the case of mass surveillance, where the information is transferred to third countries, individuals may not even suspect that their data are processed without their informed consent” – said Natalija Bitiukova, whilst also drawing attention to the issues widely debated in Europe, but not yet in Lithuania.

Giovanni Buttarelli, the European Data Protection Supervisor noted at the conference that cybersecurity must not become an excuse for a disproportionate management of personal data. “For a long time it was believed that the right to privacy and protection of personal data are intersecting with cybersecurity. However, I believe this is the wrong approach” – he said.

Vytautas Butrimas, chief of the Ministry of Defence, had a contrary opinion – in his opinion, in today’s world, privacy is a myth. The participants of the second panel of the conference pointed out that everyone, who has access to internet, is basically public and not protected. “People share various information online and do not consider the consequences”, said Aurimas Navys, the representative of the International Security Cluster Association.

One of the goals of the conference was to encourage the public discussion, and dialogue between the groups of competing interests regarding the cybersecurity and the right to privacy. The Conference was organized by US-LT Alumni Association.