Computers, Privacy and Data Protection (CPDP) 2021

Gkotsopoulou, O. (Organiser), Borocz, I. M. (Chair)

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipating in or organizing a public lecture/debate


To record or not to record? COVID-19, body temperature screenings and the GDPR material scope

Timeslot: Wednesday, 27 January 2021, 10:30-11:45 CET

Panel focus: Academic ** Policy *** Business *

With the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, body temperature screening, thermal imaging and symptom tracking were some of the first measures considered in the combat against Covid-19. For a long time, there have been debates at Member State level as to whether thermal imaging and body temperature checks fall under the GDPR scope and the respective national implementing laws. Nonetheless, diverse conclusions appear to have emerged by national supervisory authorities, which reflect national differences in the application of the data protection law with respect to the use of automated and non-automated processing means, the definition of processing and the registration/archiving or not of the processed data. With body temperature screening techniques as point of departure, in this panel we will deliberate how the Covid-19 pandemic has re-heated the discussion around the GDPR material scope and the practical implications.

This panel aims to:

Discuss national Covid-19 measures which may be purely analogue or combine analogue and digital components, enacted during the pandemic with emphasis on body temperature checks, and assess the importance of non-automation in EU data protection law.
Explore national legislations and opinions issued by the national supervisory authorities in a form of a comparative analysis and in juxtaposition with the EU institutional response.
Present and debate remarkable stances and views and explain the observed diversions and similarities.
Study the GDPR material scope through the lenses of the pandemic from a pragmatic perspective.

Moderator: István Böröcz, Researcher VUB/LSTS (BE) CONFIRMED


Sandra Dobler, Senior Legal Adviser, International Rail Transport Committee (CH) CONFIRMED
Daniela Galatova, Researcher, Pan-European University of Law in Bratislava (SK) CONFIRMED
Shara Monteleone, Policy officer, Italian Data Protection Authority (Garante per la protezione dei dati personali) (IT) CONFIRMED
Nerea Peris Brines, Deputy DPO, European Data Protection Board (EU) CONFIRMED
Ibolya Tóth, Head of Unit, Deputy DPO, Hungarian Authority for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (HU) CONFIRMED
Period27 Jan 2021
Event typeConference
LocationBrussels, Belgium
Degree of RecognitionInternational