Your personal data is closely linked to your private life, which is protected by the human right to private life. Therefore, any activity relating to personal data must be carried out lawfully so that this right is not violated.

Personal data is any kind of information about a person that can be collected, stored and used, in other words, processed in different ways by public authorities and private individuals and other entities. 

Right to private life

Your personal data is private information and is thus closely linked with your private life. Human rights protect your privacy. Therefore, any activity using your data interferes with your human right to private life, but it will not always result in a violation of this right. Data processing is often simply necessary to lead a normal everyday life. There is nothing wrong with data processing if you have agreed to it and it is done in a lawful way. 

However, there may also be situations when your data was processed without your consent and contrary to the protection of your private life. Data protection is therefore necessary to guarantee the appropriate use of your personal data and safeguard your right to private life. 

About this Guide

The aim of this Guide is to explain what your personal data is, what the most common situations are where your personal data is possessed and used by others and how such actions can interfere with and violate your human right to private life. The Guide will also explain where you should complain if you believe that data processing activities have violated your right to private life.


Human Rights Guide

A European platform for human rights education