55 mins

The Risks of Data-Intensive Systems

Privacy International
Governments across the world are radically changing policies and infrastructure, in the hope of enabling economic opportunity and attracting international investment, securing their societies, and strengthening institutions. Innovations in policies, business models, and technologies enable governments to collect ever more data about people. New systems process data on large scales, generating intelligence on individuals, groups, markets, and societies. Consequently, researchers require new understandings around law, technology, the value of data, and the risks to rights of individuals and groups.
About this course:
This course will address how governments are deploying new systems and policies that promote the creation of vast amounts of data on people. It will explore how these affect individuals’ abilities to determine and control data about them, the information interpreted from it, the intelligence generated, and how these radical changes affect rights. There are examples from developed and developing economies, showing how the deployment of data-intensive systems is a global phenomenon requiring a comprehensive response. One which ensures systems are designed and implemented respecting privacy and other fundamentals rights for socio-economic development, political stability, and human security.
What do I learn:
You’ll learn to explore concepts and definitions related to data-intensive systems from both a legal and technological perspective. You’ll get an overview of their use in history, how they are set up today, what’s different today, and the likely systems of tomorrow. You’ll develop your expertise in undertaking problem analyses of these initiatives and you’ll be trained to question and challenge them.
What do I need to know:
This course is for people with a background in research, law, or social science, working or with an interest in developing their knowledge of the human rights field on topics surrounding privacy. It is strongly recommended to have taken the courses Right to Privacy: Introduction and Principles and Right to Privacy: Data and Surveillance.


Privacy International

Privacy International is committed to fighting for the right to privacy across the world. We litigate to ensure that surveillance is consistent with the rule of law. And advocate for strong national, regional, and international laws that protect privacy, conducting research to catalyse policy change.

Melissa Bryant

Melissa Bryant is a Communications Officer at Privacy International. She has worked as a journalist and a campaigner/facilitator.

1.1 Introduction to course
1.2 Introduction to data-intensive systems
1.3 Privacy and the post-Data Revolution
1.4 Data and ID systems
1.5 The Privacy Lens
2.1 What is Data?
2.2 The rise of data-driven systems
2.3 Quiz
3.1 Policy options and practice
3.2 Systems
3.3 Case-study: data breaches in elections
4.1 Actors, participants and protections
4.2 Types of interventions
4.3 Activity
5.1 Data Exploitation and the Future of Privacy
6.1 Conclusion

Related courses

  • 40 mins


    Right to Privacy: Data and Surveillance

    Privacy International

    40 mins

    Privacy International
  • 35 mins

    Privacy International

    35 mins

    Privacy International

Suggested reading

  • Blog

    Defending Online Freedom: Three Organisations in Action

    Internet freedom has been threatened globally due to the rise of censorship, internet shutdowns, and surveillance. Such actions have significantly impacted individuals' ability to access information, express themselves freely, and communicate with others online. In this blog, we will discuss three such organisations. Each of these organisations shared with us insights learned from their experiences as part of our new shutdown academy courses.

  • Blog

    How The Economist uses IODA to report on Internet shutdowns

    This is a case study from our course ‘Detecting Internet Shutdowns with IODA’, in our Internet Shutdown Academy, which features 10 courses in seven languages taught by experts from leading organisations. It is designed to educate activists, journalists, and anyone impacted by internet disruptions and online censorship.

  • Blog

    Relaunching Stronger: Discover Exciting Updates on Advocacy Assembly!

    We're excited to announce the launch of our new website! Read more!

  • Blog

    Internet Shutdown Mentored Training Program

    Advocacy Assembly presents the Shutdown mentored training program, a six-week online initiative that features international experts and provides participants with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary to prepare better for shutdowns and build an Internet shutdown advocacy campaign.

  • Blog

    The human cost of internet shutdowns

    In the age of technology, the internet has become a crucial aspect of daily life for millions of people around the world. From online shopping to social media and communication, the internet has changed the way we interact with one another and access information. However, internet shutdowns are increasingly becoming a common occurrence in many countries, with potentially serious consequences for citizens and their rights.

  • Blog

    Case study: Experiencing a shutdown in Cuba during protests

    In July 2021, Cuba saw the largest protests in more than 100 years taking place throughout the country. Cubans flooded the streets to demand better access to food, water, medicine, and COVID-19 vaccines, calling for government reforms. The first protest took place in a small town out of Havana called San Antonio de los Baros. The unrest was live-streamed on Facebook and had a domino effect throughout the country. Read more..

Skip to navigation
  • Privacy
  • Terms