CCDCOE to Launch a Pioneering Study on Digital Rights in Armed Conflicts

NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) in cooperation with the Indiana University Ostrom Workshop is conducting a pioneering legal study into the application of the rights to privacy and data protection in times of armed conflict. The outcome will be an edited volume published by CCDCOE in May 2022. To fill a void in legal research analysing these issues, CCDCOE invites both internationally renowned scholars, experienced practitioners as well as emerging voices to contribute to this anthology. The Call for Papers is now open.

Personal data is being collected and stored for military purposes during peacetime, before and during an armed conflict and in the post-conflict phase. While the law of armed conflict contains very few, if any, lex specialis rules on the requirements and conditions of lawful data processing, other regimes such as international human rights law continue to apply during armed conflict and contain specific provisions concerning the protection of information privacy and data integrity. This edited volume sets out to offer the first holistic account of the relationship between these governing bodies as they relate to the respect and protection of digital rights in wartime.

In the light of the technological advances in the fields of electronic surveillance, social engineering, predictive algorithms, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, automated processing, biometric analysis, and targeted hacking, this study is more relevant today than ever before. In this research we seek to explore the way these technologies and others are currently being developed and employed in military operations, and the existing international law regimes that apply to their development and deployment. A thorough legal study of the rights to privacy and data protection in times of armed conflict is therefore long overdue.

Dr Asaf Lubin, Associate Professor of Law at Indiana University Maurer School of Law and Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, and Dr Russell Buchan, Senior Lecturer in International Law at the University of Sheffield, have agreed to act as the editors of the volume.

CCDCOE invites international law scholars, practicing privacy attorneys, military professionals, and technologists to provide their assessment of both the status quo and where the law might need to go in the face of evolving threat environments and technological realities. Proposals for papers are expected by April 19th, 2021. Selection will be made by May 17th. Find out more details from the Call for Papers.

The edited volume will be published and launched during the 14th International Conference on Cyber conflict (CyCon) in May 2022. The project is jointly funded by NATO CCDCOE and the Indiana University Ostrom Workshop.

The CCDCOE is a NATO-affiliated multinational cyber defence hub focusing on research, training and exercises. It represents a community of most NATO nations and also partners of the Alliance across the globe with expertise in the areas of technology, law, strategy and operations.