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What security means for NGOs (and why we do it badly)

17 November 2017

There are three good reasons why security is so hard for NGOs. First, we are afraid to speak about meaningful security. Second, we focus on the wrong areas of security and in turn spend money and prioritise the wrong things. Third, we struggle to separate the world we want from the worlds we build within our own organisations. At PI we have failed and struggled with each of these for over 20 years.


6 November 2017

The European Court of Human Rights will hear a landmark case on surveillance tomorrow (7 November) as part of a challenge to the lawfulness of the UK’s surveillance laws and its intelligence agencies’ mass surveillance practices.

See the attached briefing for case background and historical information.

US Border Cops Set to Use Biometrics to Build a Line Up of the World

25 October 2017

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has contracted one of the world’s largest arms companies to manage a huge expansion of its biometric surveillance programme.

According to a presentation seen by Privacy International, the new system, known as Homeland Advanced Recognition Technology (HART), will scoop up a whopping 180 million new biometric transactions per year by 2022.

We’re all aliens to someone: response to U.S. government consultation on social media surveillance at borders

19 October 2017

Privacy International has today submitted comments to a U.S. government consultation on whether the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) should keep the social media details of individuals travelling to the US in so-called “Alien Files” documenting all immigrants.

Press Notice: Privacy International makes recommendations to strengthen UK Data Protection Bill

9 October 2017

While welcoming the objective of the Bill, Privacy International has sent a briefing to the House of Lords and a letter to Minister of State for Digital, Matt Hancock MP, outlining key concerns and recommendations. The Bill's stated aim is “to create a clear and coherent data protection regime”, and to update the UK data protection law, including by bringing the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Law Enforcement Directive (DPLED) - into the UK domestic system. We've summarsised our concerns below.

Privacy International launches international campaign for greater transparency around secretive intelligence sharing activities between governments

13 September 2017

Privacy International, in partnership with 30+ national human rights organisations, has today written to national intelligence oversight bodies in over 40 countries seeking information on the intelligence sharing activities of their governments. 

Case Study: Connected Cars and the Future of Car Travel in the Digital Age

30 August 2017

As society heads toward an ever more connected world, the ability for individuals to protect and manage the invisible data that companies and third parties hold about them, becomes increasingly difficult. This is further complicated by events like data breaches, hacks, and covert information gathering techniques, which are hard, if not impossible, to consent to. One area where this most pressing is in transportation, and by extension the so-called ‘connected car’.

Case Study: Profiling and Elections - How Political Campaigns Know Our Deepest Secrets

30 August 2017

Political campaigns around the world have turned into sophisticated data operations. In the US, Evangelical Christians candidates reach out to unregistered Christians and use a scoring system to predict how seriously millions these of voters take their faith. As early as 2008, the Obama campaign conducted a data operation which assigned every voter in the US a pair of scores that predicted how likely they would cast a ballot, and whether or not they supported him.

Case Study: Fintech and the Financial Exploitation of Customer Data

30 August 2017

Financial services are collecting and exploiting increasing amounts of data about our behaviour, interests, networks, and personalities to make financial judgements about us, like our creditworthiness.

Increasingly, financial services such as insurers, lenders, banks, and financial mobile app startups, are collecting and exploiting a broad breadth of data to make decisions about people. This is particularly affecting the poorest and most excluded in societies.

For example, the decisions surrounding whether to grant someone a loan can now be dependent upon: