Brazilian Federal Supreme Court blocks government access to telecommunications user information


Brazil’s Federal Supreme Court has struck down a government order forcing telecommunications companies to provide access to the user information relating to the country’s 200 million citizens to enable the government to conduct phone interviews to determine the economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the process, the ruling established that data protection is a fundamental right. However, privacy advocates warned that the lack of established data protection law in the country opened the way for government bodies to create their own understanding of what data protection is and should be. Both the Brazilian federal government and at least 14 of its 27 state governments have sought to capture Brazilians’ data as part of responding to the COVID-19 pandmic, some by partnering with a third party that collects the information and others by entering directly into agreements with companies. (Portuguese)
Writer: Ken Silva; Hannah Draper; Data Privacy Brazil
Publication: Global Data Review; Open Society Foundations; Data Privacy Brazil