Lecture on International development in Privacy and Human Rights

International development in Privacy and Human Rights

Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion, Advocacy Officer from Privacy International,  will be presenting at San Andres University next Thursday December 3 2015 at 930 am

Place: San Andres University (downtown campus).


In the last three years, starting with the Snowden’s revelations and related political fallout that followed; there has been a great momentum to put the right to privacy on the agenda of various forums at the regional and international level. This has been illustrated by the various resolutions reports by UN human rights independent experts and by the UN main political bodies including the UN General Assembly, the Human Rights Council and Human Rights Committee on the right to privacy, and in particular as to how it relates to its definitions within Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Other forums at the regional and international level have been exploring related topics encryption, anonymity, export control of surveillance technologies, data protection, data exploitation, big data, cyber security, and counter-terrorism. To leverage this momentum, PI has been engaging through various mechanisms in many of these debates in order to ensure that policies and regulations being developed reflect the local realities. PI has thus been working to articulate legal, policy and technological standards and principles to guide research, policy engagement and calls for reform on the right to privacy and related topics, in particular as it relates to the global south, data exploitation and communications surveillance. This session will outline the main discussions taking place at the international level on the right to privacy and related topics, present some of the challenges and opportunities and conclude with suggestion for avenues for research and policy engagement.

Alex bio

Alexandrine is a Programme Lead and Advocacy Officer at Privacy International working across the organisation and the PI network on privacy related issues with a particular focus on communications surveillance with the aim of engaging in advocacy activities at the national, region and international level and carrying out related thematic research. Additionally, she coordinates the PI’s work with its International Network across Africa Asia and Latin America. Before joining PI, she was engaged in research and advocacy on issues relating to human rights, irregular migration, Security Sector Reform, gender, conflict management and human security. Alexandrine graduated from the University of Birmingham with an MSc in Conflict Security and Development following an LLM in International Law at the University of Westminster.


Argentina – New FOI decision from the Supreme Court

Argentina Supreme Court issued a ruling requiring state-controlled oil company YPF to fully disclose the agreement it signed with U.S.-based Chevron Corp. for the development of the giant Vaca Muerta shale formation. The agreement between YPF and Chevron called for $1.24 billion in investment in an initial pilot phase and $1.6 billion in the second phase.

The FOI claim was filed by opposition Senator Hector Ruben Giustiniani after YPF refused to answer his questions about the contract with Chevron, particularly in regard to the potential environmental impact of the project. It was based on the FOI Regulation and the Public Access to Environmental Information Law.

The company refused to disclosed the agreement stating generically that it contained trade secrets. It also argued that it was a private company not subject to the FOI Regulation.

The Supreme Court concluded that:

– The imprecise and generic affirmations formulated by YPF SA were not sufficient to hold as proven that the release of the content of the accord might compromise industrial, technical and scientific secrets.

– YPF may be a private company but it is owned and controlled by the State.

– Freedom of information is “a fundamental human right” that implies the protection of “access to information under the control of the state.

This is another case in a long list of cases this Court has issued in matters of FOI law.



International transfers of personal data: Consequences of the Schrems case in Latin America

International transfers of personal data: Consequences

of the Schrems case in Latin America


  • International transfer of personal data in the EU.

By Paula Vargas, Coordinator of the DTIC UDESA Program and IAPP member.

By Pablo A. Palazzi, Prof. of Law UDESA and Partner Allende & Brea, IAPP KnowledgeNet Chair of Argentine Chapter.



San Andres University

25 de mayo 586 . Aula 101


October 20  2015 – from 1 to 3 pm

Organized by

Maestría y Especialización en Derecho Empresario

DITC Programa de Derecho de Internet y Tecnología de las Comunicaciones

Departamento de Derecho UDESA

IAPP Knowledgnet meeting


Privacy in the workplace – new ruling in Argentina

The Labor court of Appeals of Buenos Aires (Argentina) issued a new ruling related to labor privacy.

The case started when the company Fischer Argentina installed in all the smart phones of its vendors a software app (called Show position) that allowed the company to monitor the physical location of the employee. The software was monitoring location of the employee even after the end of the work time in the company including weekends.

Several employees sued the company requesting a ruling declaring the illegality of this practice and to have the conditions of the working relationship free of this surveillance.

The company stated as a defense that the information collected was useful to optimize the performance at work. And that its purpose was to avoid duplicates in routes of the vendor. It also added that the employee can turn on the mobile phone when the work time finish to avoid any tracking. It also hinted that the employee/vendor was avoiding the use of this device because they were not really visiting the clients of the company but doing the sales only via telephone calls.

The first instance court and the court of appeals decided the case in favor of complainant. The court stated that the employees were allowed to use the mobile phones in their home and outside of work and for personal matters, without any restrictions of usage (only paying the bill of the phone). The court concluded that by installing the software the company was able to access information related to geolocation of the employee even during the time were the employee is not working for the company.

According to the court, the installation of the software was an “unlawful intromission into the employee´s privacy infringing the privacy provisions of the Constitution (arts. 19) and several Human Right Treaties protection privacy.

The Court also mention the data protection act (section 5.2) and the exceptions to consent but concludes that the company has not justified that the collection was necessary for the performance of the duties of the workers.

Thus the company was forced to discontinue this practice with respect to plaintiffs.

This is one of the first ruling by a labour court of appeals in Argentina protecting privacy. We expect more developments in the future since the protection of workers rights by judges in Argentine is very strong.