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In 2022, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade with its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, leaving many individuals anxious about the future of their privacy rights. With millions of people using period-tracking apps, there is a massive amount of sensitive data at stake, including data that criminal prosecutors could use to criminalize people for seeking or having an abortion. Some people are better protected because of their home state’s data privacy legislation, but most Americans are left with no data privacy law protecting their sensitive data. In an era of sophisticated tracking technology, the absence of comprehensive data protection legislation threatens the unprotected. A federal data privacy bill is currently in the House of Representatives, but it does not address the problems that those who can get pregnant will face in a world without Roe. Another proposed bill may offer more protection, but to adequately protect individuals who may become pregnant, Congress will need to provide explicit protections for reproductive data from prosecutorial overreach.


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3 May 2023
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  • Subject
    • Legislation

    • Privacy Law

    • Reproduction

  • Journal title
    • Boston College Intellectual Property and Technology Forum

  • Volume
    • 2023

  • Pagination
    • 1-12

  • Date submitted

    3 May 2023