Pandemic Highlights Differences in European and American Data Privacy Laws



The COVID-19 outbreak has created an urgent need for public health authorities to trace with whom infected people have been in contact before they realized they were sick.
Traditional contact tracing, where workers query patients about their interactions to see who else might have been infected — and perhaps to find out where they got the infection — is being widely used.
But for the first time, many public health authorities are considering, or have implemented, smart phone apps to partially automate and scale contact tracing.

The discussion was led by Eric Ghysels, a UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School professor of finance. He was joined by:

  • Daniel Castro, Vice President and Director, Center for Data Innovation, Information Technology & Innovation Foundation
  • Thomas Zerdick, Head of Unit “Technology and Privacy”, European Data Protection Supervisor

Eric Ghysels