The Italian Institute for Data Privacy and Data Enhancement works to intergrate the creation of a dialogue between lawyers, economists, technologists, sociologists, businesses, politicians, journalists, institutions on the issues of personal data law, privacy, and information in the digital society. Lobbying does not fall within our scope nor methods, while we are engaged in advocacy and divulgation battles.
The choice not to receive public funding preferring private companies only, leads us to ask ourselves whether or not we are independent: the answer is yes, we are independent, due to our inclusion among our Supporters and Sponsors of subjects from different worlds. Often, they are in competition, or in any case, they are supporters of different ideas and visions, and it would be logically – as well as ethically – impossible “to serve” and “chase” these thoughts and contradictory proposals. We are not neutral, however, in the sense that we take clear positions on every issue we face and we have a liberal-type of interpretative approach. We are open to the “not in my name” practice, which can be requested at any time by the experts of the Institute who have not shared the majority position expressed in our research.
We conduct our analysis and propose our solutions based on this principle: “the protection of personal data is a fundamental right of every human being. Without privacy, data protection, digital identity and freedom of information, people are not fully capable to inform themselves, work, and participate in public debate both online and offline.” There are, however, different ways to balance this fundamental right with other freedoms, intergrating rights and legitimate interests: the excess of protection and bureaucratic ties, to the detriment of balance between rights and risks that the operation succeed perfectly in abstract. But in practice, it can block entire economic and social sectors with dangerous consequences in terms of the citizens’ freedom.
The Internet industry in particular (service providers, search engines and other operators) have a higher responsibility to ensure the privacy and data protection of its users. Without it, operators have to renounce market competitiveness. Governments have a duty within this role to guarantee the privacy of their citizens, adequately by protecting personal information contained in public archives. Governments must not be able to violate the privacy of citizens without fair reason, maximum transparency, and careful control processes.
We are an Italian Institute but we believe that the right to privacy and data protection can be guaranteed only through close collaboration of all citizens of the European Union. Further allowing that governments and businesses are effectively accountable and controlled on these issues. Therefore we actively cooperate with European citizens and organizations who share our mission and our principles.
These aims are also developed through intensive studies that allows production, publish, spread analysis, researches, and documents over time on crucial privacy issues to evolve. Intergrating the proper development of different economic, business, institutional and professional initiatives in general.
The challenge for flourishing markets of knowledge and information is obtained by combining the economic freedom of exchange and the protection of new generation of fundamental rights.