IGF 2021 WS #27
Is privacy making the Internet insecure?

Organizer 1: Serge Droz, FIRST

Speaker 1: Jurgita Miseviciute, Private Sector, Eastern European Group
Speaker 2: Christopher Parsons, Civil Society, Intergovernmental Organization
Speaker 3: Natalia Krapiva, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)


Serge Droz, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Online Moderator

Serge Droz, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)


Serge Droz, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)


Round Table - Circle - 60 Min

Policy Question(s)

Cybersecurity practices and mechanisms: What are the good cybersecurity practices and international mechanisms that already exist? Where do those mechanisms fall short and what can be done to strengthen the security and to reinforce the trust?
Ensuring a safe digital space: How should governments, Internet businesses and other stakeholders protect citizens, including vulnerable citizens, against online exploitation and abuse?

Increasingly Internet users are asking for more privacy, which is technically implemented using encryption technology. But as abuse and crime utilizing the Internet is growing the demand for more surveillance capabilities is increasing too. What are acceptable compromises, what are risks of having privacy by default?


Targets: Privacy on one hand and security on the other hand are essential for peace and justice as well as strong institutes. The absence of privacy leads to authoritarian regimes, which in turn is counter to security as understood in a holistic, human centric sense. However, it cannot be denied, that authorities must have some tools to monitor abuse and crime. But where is the balance, and where does one require the other? These questions are often not discussed in a balanced manner, yet in a networked age they are increasingly important.


As more and more nefarious actors leverage the internet the call for more surveillance becomes louder. All parties agree that a balanced approached is needed, but completely disagree where it is. We would like to propose a panel discussion focusing on:

1. Risks and opportunities of privacy: While the absence of privacy can help finding nefarious activities, it is not an accident that privacy is a human right. What are the risks to security and safety for different stakeholders, including civil society if privacy is weakened?
2. What information should be private?
3. In a privacy respecting world, how can nefarious activities be found and prosecuted? What are acceptable compromises and mechanisms overcome the limitations imposed by privacy?

Expected Outcomes

A common understanding of risks and opportunities offered by privacy aware services as well as an understanding of open points. An understanding of areas that need further investigations to make a call?

We ould have a short introduction by the moderator scoping the topic. Then each of the invited panellists will should present their views, concerns, and questions. After about half the time it's planed to involve the audience with Q&As. The moderator will ensure that online participants given ample space space by e.g. insisting on alternate inputs from on and off line participants. If it's felt by the organizers, that a designated online moderator should be present, we will accommodate this.

Online Participation

Usage of IGF Official Tool.