Council of Europe adopts recommendation on human rights impacts of algorithmic systems

The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has adopted a Recommendation on the human rights implications of algorithmic systems, containing a set of guidelines for public and private actors to consider when designing, developing, and deploying algorithmic systems. The recommendation notes that, while algorithmic processes can foster innovation and economic development, they can also pose challenges to human rights, in areas such as privacy and data protection, freedom of thought, freedom of expression, the right to equal treatment, and economic and social rights. Governments are called upon to establish effective and predictable legislative and regulatory frameworks that prevent, detect, prohibit, and remedy human rights violations in the context of algorithmic systems. States should also ensure that algorithmic systems incorporate safety, privacy, data protection, and security safeguards by design. Private sector actors are reminded of their obligation to exercise due diligence in respect of human rights and are asked to implement privacy, security, transparency, and accountability measures, among others.