Partners Martin Zoltick and Jenny Colgate published a chapter titled "The Application of Data Protection Laws in (Outer) Space" in the recently released International Comparative Legal Guide to: Data Protection 2019, published by Global Legal Group Ltd. This chapter is particularly relevant to entities that are using or may in the future use satellites to process personal data.
Trying to determine which data protection laws, rules, and regulations apply to us, and to our data, as we move about the world, is confusing and complex. And even if we as individuals stay put, the data about us travels the world—and beyond. We have an emerging space infrastructure and deployment of space and terrestrial components, products, and services that are becoming an essential part of the ecosystem of interconnected devices and services. Companies and organisations are already working to realise the promise of satellite-powered networks that would bring the Internet of Things (IoT) everywhere in the world. The authors explore a variety of legal issues that would likely come into play when dealing with the processing of personal data in outer space considering the existing patchwork of regulations and treaties, and propose that a new outer space treaty should be negotiated, or new international rules and regulations adopted, providing data protection minimum standards and making clear which law(s) govern the collection, use, disclosure, retention, and disposal of personal data or personally identifiable information (PII) in outer space.
To read the article in its entirety, see document below.