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Genetic data as a category of personal data creates a number of challenges to the traditional understanding of personal data and the rules regarding personal data processing. Although the peculiarities of and heightened risks regarding genetic data processing were recognized long before the data protection reform in the EU, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) seems to pay no regard to this. Furthermore, the GDPR will create more legal grounds for (sensitive) personal data (incl. genetic data) processing whilst restricting data subjects’ means of control over their personal data. One of the reasons for this is that, amongst other aims, the personal data reform served to promote big data business in the EU. The substantive clauses of the GDPR concerning big data, however, do not differentiate between the types of personal data being processed. Hence, like all other categories of personal data, genetic data is subject to the big data clauses of the GDPR as well; thus leading to the question whether the GDPR is creating a pathway for ‘big genetic data’. This paper aims to analyse the implications that the role of the GDPR as a big data enabler bears on genetic data processing and the respective rights of the data subject.
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- The GDPR and Big Data: Leading the Way for Big Genetic Data?
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