The Right to Privacy in Colombia
Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) provides for the right of every person to be protected against arbitrary or unlawful interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence as well as against unlawful attacks on his honour or reputation. Any interference with the right to privacy can only be justified if it is in accordance with the law, has a legitimate objective and is conducted in a way that is necessary and proportionate. Surveillance activities must only be conducted when they are the only means of achieving a legitimate aim, or when there are multiple means, they are the least likely to infringe upon human right.
Dejusticia, Karisma and Privacy International have on-going concerns on the practices of surveillance by Colombian intelligence and law enforcement agencies. National legislation governing surveillance is inadequate, unclear as to the powers, scope and capacity of surveillance activities of Colombia’s national intelligence and law enforcement agencies and thus it falls short of the required standards to safeguard individuals from unlawful interference to the right to privacy.