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Woodrow Hartzog is a Professor of Law at Boston University School of Law. His research focuses on law and policy issues related to privacy, digital technologies, and artificial intelligence. He is the author of Privacy’s Blueprint: The Battle to Control the Design of New Technologies, published in 2018 by Harvard University Press and co-author of Breached! Why Data Security Law Fails and How to Improve It, published in 2022 by Oxford University Press (with Daniel Solove).

Professor Hartzog is interested in evolving conceptualizations of privacy, data protection frameworks, and the rules around automation, algorithms, and robotics. His work has been published in numerous scholarly publications such as the Yale Law Journal, Columbia Law Review, California Law Review, and Michigan Law Review and popular publications such as BBC, CNN, The Guardian, Wired, Bloomberg, New Scientist, Slate, The Atlantic and The Nation.

He holds a Ph.D. in mass communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an LL.M. from the George Washington University Law School and a J.D. from Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law.


Scientific American

Data Vu: Why Breaches Involve the Same Stories Again and Again

BKC Faculty Associate Woodrow Hartzog writes about the repetitive mistakes made by organizations whenever a data breach or spill occurs. “The main plotline of so many data…

Jul 26, 2022

Breached! Why Data Security Law Fails and How to Improve It

Daniel Solove and Woodrow Hartzog have devised a series of recommendations to better Internet governance in "Breached! Why Data Security Law Fails and How to Improve It."

Mar 3, 2022
The University of Chicago Law Review

What is Privacy? That's the Wrong Question

Woodrow Hartzog writes that “Privacy is still a concept in disarray. But that’s okay."

Nov 24, 2021
Hello World

President Biden’s Executive Order on Big Tech

Woodrow Hartzog has a conversation about the impact of President Biden's new executive order. 

Jul 17, 2021

Who is at fault when systems powered by AI put humans in danger?

Woodrow Hartzog shares his "theory of fault" for autonomous system failures

Jun 24, 2021
The New York Times

What Happens When You Click ‘Agree’?

Woodrow Hartzog quoted by the New York Times editorial board

Jan 23, 2021
Los Angeles Times

Banning Trump from Twitter and Facebook isn’t nearly enough

Woodrow Hartzog and colleague argue social media companies should be held accountable

Jan 15, 2021
Oxford Business Law Blog

A Duty of Loyalty for Privacy Law

Scholars propose a "no conflict" rule for tech companies as a way to mitigate self-dealing behavior

Oct 28, 2020
The Boston Globe

Getting the First Amendment wrong

Woodrow Hartzog and Neil Richards argue that Clearview AI is wrongfully trying to use the First Amendment to ensure a freedom to surveil at will.

Sep 4, 2020
BKC Medium Collection

Beware of Apps Bearing Gifts in a Pandemic

Researchers share concerns about free services and public health interventions by tech companies

Aug 18, 2020
Justice Collaborative Institute

The Case for Banning Law Enforcement From Using Facial Recognition Technology

New Report from Woodrow Hartzog & Evan Selinger

Aug 4, 2020

The dangers of tech-driven solutions to COVID-19

Woodrow Hartzog co-authors essay warning of dangers, offering suggestions for tech and COVID-19

Jun 17, 2020
LA Times

Coronavirus tracing apps are coming. Here’s how they could reshape surveillance as we know it.

Woodrow Hartzog warns about the long-term consequences of the apps

May 12, 2020
New York Daily News

We need disease surveillance, not a surveillance state

Woodrow Hartzog and Evan Selinger argue against using facial recognition to combat COVID-19

May 11, 2020

Why Europe's GDPR magic will never work in the US

Woodrow Hartzog argues that any US version of GDPR would, in practice, be something of a GDPR-lite.

Feb 20, 2020
The New York Times

The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It

Faculty associate Woodrow Hartzog spoke to the New York Times about the harrowing consequences of facial recognition

Jan 18, 2020
The New York Times

What Happens When Employers Can Read Your Facial Expressions?

The benefits do not come close to outweighing the risks, writes Woodrow Hartzog

Oct 17, 2019

Why You Can’t Really Consent to Facebook’s Facial Recognition

While the social media platform’s latest approach to facial recognition appears to respect user’s choices, the offer is so tainted we can’t truly agree to it

Sep 30, 2019
Washington Post

It’s time to try something different on Internet privacy

"US lawmakers need to embrace a different approach to Internet privacy based around the concept of trust, rather than the failed concepts of notice and choice."

Dec 19, 2018

Stop Saying Privacy in Dead

Privacy still exists. You just have to know where to look for it so you know what to fight for.

Oct 11, 2018


Mar 5, 2019 @ 12:15 PM

Privacy’s Blueprint

The Battle to Control the Design of New Technologies

PODCAST & VIDEO: The dominant model for regulating privacy focuses on giving people control over their information and regulating data practices. This focus ignores the role that…