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Legal Boundaries of The Cyberspace: Privacy of E-Commerce Transactions in The International Law

Adams, Jackson (2020) Legal Boundaries of The Cyberspace: Privacy of E-Commerce Transactions in The International Law. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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Abstract

The current study investigates the effectiveness of international as well as national privacy tort laws in protecting the privacy rights related to personal information exchanged during cyber transactions. The focus is on exploring potential answers to the question: “how to regulate privacy in the digital age?” by elaborating on the conceptual, technological, and legal challenges of the phenomenon of cyber privacy. Firstly, the study demonstrates the complexity of defining the concept of ‘privacy’ across time and space – here it is argued that the lack of sufficient awareness of the meaning of ‘privacy’ and the absence of a universal consensus on what constitutes a ‘privacy right’ by citizens of the Internet, e-commerce and e-business organisations, and cyber laws legislators have significantly contributed to the breaches of consumer’s privacy laws. Secondly, the study identifies the contribution of the inherent technological challenges of digital platforms and the tempo-spatial nature of the cyber environment and its digital tools to the complexity of dealing with ‘privacy’ online, and consequently, to the difficulty of resolving disputes associated with online activities. Thirdly, the study elaborates on the legal difficulties associated with ‘cyber-jurisdictions’, which have often led to various conflicts of laws between national states. To demonstrate the boundedness of cyber privacy laws, the study has embarked on investigating both the EU and the US legal environments for dealing with the concept of ‘privacy’, the developing and protection of ‘privacy right’, the prosecuting of privacy protection breaches, and the violating of relevant laws. In doing so, the study has taken electronic commerce activities as its point of departure to investigate how businesses engaged in various forms of privacy breaches had escaped prosecution due to legal loopholes or lack of ability to implement state laws for e-privacy cases of a trans-border nature. Consequently, the study has demonstrated a dire need for having the political will of world states and the harmonisation of online privacy laws of those states in order to deal more effectively and appropriately with the right to privacy protection of personal information in the cyber environment. Otherwise, alternative approaches for internet governance need to be developed for resolving legal disputes of cyber nature.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > Law, School of
Depositing User: Dr Jackson Adams
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2020 09:51
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2020 09:51
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/29010

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