The impact of AI on Data Protection: Ensuring privacy in the era of innovation

On 7th July 2023, the European Data Protection Supervisor and the European Data Protection Board’s trainees organised a Conference on the topic of Artificial Intelligence.

Titled, “the impact of AI on data protection: ensuring privacy in the era of innovation”, this joint event invited other trainees of the EU institutions to reflect on and discuss the developments of AI, their impact on individuals and their privacy, and some of the possible measures necessary to put in place to comply with data protection law.

AI is a multidisciplinary topic, affecting numerous aspects of individuals’ day-to-day lives. To represent accurately the pluralism of this topic, the EDPS and EDPB trainees organised a panel discussion with various actors in the field - from technology experts, lawyers to politicians - each sharing their views and analysis.

Discussions focused on taking stock of some of AI’s key developments so far, the risks that these may entail, the role of the EDPS and the EDPS as institutions contributing to the enforcement of data protection law, and the balance between AI innovation and data protection. 

Speaking at the trainees’ conference, EDPS Secretary-General, Leonardo Cervera-Navas emphasised that the “the Regulation on Artificial Intelligence and the General Data Protection Regulation should go hand-in-hand for the benefit of everybody. We need to embrace technology according to EU values”.

As the conference ended, EDPB Head of Secretariat, Isabelle Vereecken, highlighted that “AI raises a lot of fundamental rights’ questions, which depend on its application, and we are also touching on ethical questions.” Isabelle Vereecken also touched upon the ban of the use of AI in certain circumstances, for example in the case of automated recognition of human features in publicly accessible spaces, advocated by both the EDPB and the EDPS.

Missed some of the discussions? Want to know more about AI? Watch the video recording of the EDPS- EDPB trainees available here. (source: photo:


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