Prof. Normann WITZLEB has published a co-authored book chapter entitled ‘“Trust” and “Self-Accountability” in the Protection of Privacy: Responding to the Rise of International Data Protection Standards in Muslim Countries’, in Adnan Trakic (ed), Shari’ah and Common Law: The Challenge of Harmonisation (De Gruyter, 2022) with Ridoan Karim.
The abstract reads: Data protection and privacy has growing significance in the digital age. This chapter explores the extent to which the right to privacy has been recognised in the laws of certain key Muslim countries. In this process, several aspects of data protection laws will be investigated from both Islamic and Western perspectives, the latter with a focus on the common law. Muslim countries in the Middle East and elsewhere have not made make specific recourse to Islamic principles when drafting their data protection laws. The chapter argues that, nonetheless, there are no fundamental disparities between secular laws on data protection and Islamic legal principles. Secular data protection laws can be supported with well-established Islamic principles relating to the sanctity of the home, the prohibition on meddling and spying, and the protection of honour, reputation, and private correspondence. As long as data protection laws encourage and require the fair, just and equitable use of personal data, they are likely to be Shari’ah-compliant. In addition, there is untapped potential to draw on the Islamic notion of self-accountability in support of enhancing trust and compliance with modern data privacy laws.