In September 2016, Privacy International intervened in the case of Catt v. the United Kingdom before the European Court of Human Rights. The case concerns Mr Catt’s complaint about the police collecting and retaining his personal data.
Mr Catt, a peace movement activist and regular attender at demonstrations who has never been convicted of any offence, found in 2010 that the police had collected and retained data about him in a police database. He asked for entries in the database which mentioned him to be deleted, but the police refused. In judicial review proceedings the UK Supreme Court ultimately held by four votes to one in March 2015 that retaining the data had been in accordance with the law and proportionate.
Relying on Article 8 (right to respect for private and family life, the home, and the correspondence), Mr Catt complains about the police’s retention of his personal data.
Privacy International's intervention focusses on the surveillance emerging technologies deployed by the police (e.g. facial recognition, body warn camera, social media intelligence, etc.) and their effects on the right to privacy.