Neurodata and Neuroprivacy: Data Protection Outdated?

Dara Hallinan, Philip Schütz, Michael Friedewald, Paul de Hert


There are a number of novel technologies and a broad range of research aimed at the collection and use of data drawn directly from the human brain. Given that this data – neurodata – is data collected from individuals, one area of law which will be of relevance is data protection. The thesis of this paper is that neurodata is a unique form of data and that this will raise questions for the application of data protection law. Issues may arise on two levels. On a legal technical level, it is uncertain whether the definitions and mechanisms used in the data protection framework can be easily applied to neurodata. On a more fundamental level, there may be interests in neurodata, particularly those related to the protection of the mind, the framework was not designed to represent and may be insufficiently equipped, or constructed, to deal with.


BCIs, neurodata, data protection, privacy, personal data

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