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    Module 4: Data Privacy and Data Protection

    The right to privacy and the concomitant requirement to protect personal information has become increasingly relevant in the information age. As access to the internet has expanded and many parts of public and private life have become increasingly digitised, there has been a sharp increase in online information-sharing and data collection, with the associated risk that this information can be accessed and abused by hostile actors. At the same time, legislative developments have failed to keep pace and adequately protect personal information. However, in recent years, the passing of data protection legislation by many African states, as well as the development of guidelines and instruments by regional and continental bodies, have provided some protections to remedy and vindicate the privacy rights of African peoples.

    This module focuses on the right to privacy in the digital age in Africa by evaluating the state of data protection, the related concepts of the ‘right to be forgotten’ and encryption assesses the growing risks of government and commercial surveillance as well as the emerging challenges of the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to perpetrate privacy violations, and sets out emerging principles and safeguards in this rapidly advancing digital environment.