Artificial intelligence: a threat to privacy?

  • Dr Sunita Abhay Jain
  • Ms Simran Jain
Keywords: artificial intelligence, right to privacy, data protection, human rights


Klaus Schwab has observed that, “The Fourth Industrial Revolution, finally, will change not only what we do but also who we are. It will affect our identity and all the issues associated with it: our sense of privacy, our notions of ownership, our consumption patterns, the time we devote to work and leisure, and how we develop our careers, cultivate our skills, meet people, and nurture relationships.” Advances in Artificial intelligence have transformed our world. John McCarthy from the Computer Science Department of Stanford University coined the termand defined it as, the science and engineering of making intelligent machines. Artificial intelligence is where a machine possesses the intelligence as that of a human being. Such machines with artificial intelligence, like anyother human being can react to and contemplate the environment it is in and react accordingly. It collects information around it and has the ability to take decisions accordingly. This system of artificial intelligence though sounds helpful on prima facie understanding; it has been a threat to the privacy of an individual. These artificial intelligence mechanisms are controlled by softwares which are developed by human entities. Such owners have a control over the action and reaction of the artificial intelligence mechanism. In today’s digitalised world every individual in one or the other way is subject to the use of technology. Enormous amount of personal data is stored as digital data, which the artificial intelligence mechanism is making use of, in view of the betterment of standard of living. On the flip side, all personal data including our finger prints, travel details, frequent interaction with a particular persons, medical reports are collected, stored, processed, profiled with the help of Artificial Intelligence. This invades a person’s privacy. In this background, the paper tries to analyze the invasion of privacy by Artificial Intelligence and the ill-effects of the same. In the guise of public good even the government has adopted AI mechanisms which lead to questioning the governmental action. Likewise, there is hardly any legislation that regulates these aspects either on the national or on the international platform. The paper focuses on India and lack of any legislation till date to protect an individual’s Privacy. Since the Supreme Court of India has upheld that right to privacy is a fundamental right under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, though not an absolute right, it is high time a comprehensive Privacy legislation is enacted in India.

How to Cite
Jain, D. S., & Jain, M. S. (2019). Artificial intelligence: a threat to privacy?. Nirma University Law Journal, 8(2), 16. Retrieved from