Governmental surveillance activities: report

6 September 2017
Issued by
The Special Rapporteur on the right to Privacy
To the HRC at its 34th session


In his report, prepared pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 28/16, the Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy focuses on governmental surveillance activities from a national and international perspective.

In an attempt to fulfil his tasks as outlined in his previous report (A/HRC/31/64), and particularly in the surveillance sector, the Special Rapporteur invested considerable effort in organizing the International Intelligence Oversight Forum, held in Bucharest on 11 and 12 October 2016. The event brought together nearly 70 participants from some 26 institutions in 20 countries. They included independent oversight authorities, parliamentary committees, some members of civil society and even an oversight tribunal.


The Special Rapporteur elaborates on the characteristics of the international legal framework and the interpretation thereof. He also describes recent developments and trends, how these can be studied and how they interact with the enjoyment of the right to privacy and other interconnected human rights.

Consequently, he outlines first approaches to a more privacy-friendly oversight of government surveillance. In conclusion, the Special Rapporteur reports on his activities in the period covered by his report.