Privacy, Data Protection and Cybersecurity Law - LW641

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
Canterbury Autumn
View Timetable
6 15 (7.5) MS L Dickson


LW588/LW614 Public Law 1.


Not available to non-law students.



This module will focus on the way in which the law defines and constructs privacy, breach of confidence, cybersecurity threats, and e-surveillance in the UK, EU and elsewhere as appropriate (e.g. North America, Australia) and how the law regulates data protection, freedom of information, consent for digital and personal information collection, use and sharing, and e-surveillance. Students will be asked to critically examine whether privacy protection laws, consent, and confidentiality measures are fit for purpose and proportionate given demands of the market, the state, and public administrations to collect, use, and share personal information for reasons of commerce, service provision, and security protection. Students will be challenged to critically examine how personal, financial, health, and economic transactional data are managed, who has access to this information, and for what purposes. The module will require students to assess emerging legal, regulatory, data protection and personal privacy issues raised by widespread access to personal information, including data generated by social media, electronic commerce, state security agencies, and health administrations. The curriculum will explore rapidly changing privacy and data protection issues including the 'right to be forgotten', the Internet of Things (IoT), cybersecurity law in a post-Snowden world including Safe Harbours, data retention and reuse implications of the UK National DNA database, biobanks, and digital interconnectivity of social media.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

One hour weekly lecture and one hour weekly seminar.

Method of assessment

100% coursework or possible 100% dissertation.

Indicative reading

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

Demonstrate a fulsome understanding of the concepts, principles, policies, debates and legal doctrines associated with privacy, dataprotection,cybersecurity, and freedom of information law.
Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the origins and development of EU and UK data protection, freedom of information, and e-security surveillance statutes, legal frameworks and regulations, Human Rights protections, and EU Article 29 Data Protection Working Party opinions and rulings.
Undertake in-depth analysis of emerging issues in privacy, data protection, cybersecurity, e-surveillance, and freedom of information.
Think critically about privacy, data protection, cybersecurity, e-surveillance, and freedom of information: to take nothing at face value, to go beneath the surface of the law, to critically analyse and evaluate it.

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