Exploring the "Right to Be Forgotten"

Feb 09, 2012
Nicole A. Ozer

Page Media

ACLU of Northern CA

I'm heading to Palo Alto tomorrow for the Stanford Technology Law Review's symposium and looking forward to the first panel of the day, Taking Forgetting Seriously.

The question of whether an individual should have the right to demand that organizations delete their data is getting a lot of increased attention, particularly in the European Union. In late January, EU Justice Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding proposed a sweeping reform of data protection rules, including a "right to be forgotten."

Interested in learning more about this issue of the right to delete/right to be forgotten? My colleague, Chris Conley, wrote an article entitled "The Right to Delete" for the 2010 Intelligent Privacy Management Symposium at Stanford. It tackled some of the questions in this debate, including whether an individual should have a right to delete, whether it matters who holds these records or what forms the records take, and if this right is indeed socially beneficial, can it be effectively implemented. You can download the article here.

Nicole A. Ozer is the Technology and Civil Liberties Policy Director with the ACLU of Northern California.