AI Love You pp 111-130 | Cite as

From the Mind to the Cloud: Personal Data in the Age of the Internet of Things

  • Giuseppe LuganoEmail author
  • Martin Hudák
  • Matúš Ivančo
  • Tomáš Loveček


Society is undergoing a major digital transformation affecting all areas of human activity. While the expected benefits of this societal turn are many, the use of IoT technologies presents challenges and risks from the viewpoint of fundamental human rights, such as privacy, that should not be underestimated. The legislative framework is constantly adapting to address these emerging needs: in Europe, the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was a milestone towards an enhanced citizens’ data protection. However, the GDPR does have its limitations, both from the viewpoint of its practical applicability and the grey areas, mostly related to specific technologies and applications. Two case studies are presented, namely on connected and automated driving and domestic social robots. Despite the GDPR, mechanisms allowing citizens to have adequate control over their personal data are still not in place, and the advent of the IoT is likely to increase such challenges.


Data protection GDPR Internet of Things Connected and automated driving Domestic social robots Human–robot interaction 



The article was published with the support of the project ERAdiate—Enhancing Research and innovAtion dimensions of the University of Žilina in intelligent transport systems, co-funded from European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development, and demonstration under grant agreement no. 621386.


  1. Abraham, H., Lee, C., Brady, S., Fitzgerald, C., Mehler, B., Reimer, B., & Coughlin, J. F. (2016). Autonomous vehicles, trust, and driving alternatives: A survey of consumer preferences. White paper 2016-6. Cambridge, MA: MIT AgeLab.Google Scholar
  2. Agarwal, R., Gao, G., DesRoches, C., & Jha, A. K. (2010). Research commentary—The digital transformation of healthcare: Current status and the road ahead. Information Systems Research, 21(4), 796–809.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Astor, M. (2017, June 25). Your Roomba may be mapping your home, collecting data that could be shared. The New York Times. Retrieved from
  4. Baldini, G., Botterman, M., Neisse, R., & Tallacchini, M. (2018). Ethical design in the internet of things. Science and Engineering Ethics, 24(3), 905–925.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Baron, N. S. (2015). Shall we talk? Conversing with humans and robots. The Information Society, 31(3), 257–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bounfour, A. (2016). Digital futures, digital transformation. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Breazeal, C. (2003). Emotion and sociable humanoid robots. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 59(1–2), 119–155.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Broadbent, E. (2017). Interactions with robots: The truths we reveal about ourselves. Annual Review of Psychology, 68, 627–652.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Calo, M. R. (2011). Robots and privacy. In P. Lin, K. Abney, & G. A. Bekey (Eds.), Robot ethics: The ethical and social implications of robotics (p. 187). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  10. Cavoli, C., et al. (2017). Social and behavioural questions associated with automated vehicles. A literature review. London, UK: Department for Transport.Google Scholar
  11. Cheok, A. D., Levy, D., Karunanayaka, K., & Morisawa, Y. (2017). Love and sex with robots. In Handbook of digital games and entertainment technologies (pp. 833–858). Singapore: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Chung, H., Iorga, M., Voas, J., & Lee, S. (2017). Alexa, can I trust you?. Computer, 50(9), 100–104.Google Scholar
  13. Courtney, M. (2017). Careless talk costs privacy [digital assistants]. Engineering & Technology, 12(10), 50–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Danaher, J., & McArthur, N. (Eds.). (2017). Robot sex: Social and ethical implications. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  15. de Arriba-Sellier, N. (2018, June 5). GDPR: the risks of empowering lawyers, not citizens. Leiden Law Blog. Retrieved from
  16. Duportail, J. (2017, September 26). I asked Tinder for my data. It sent me 800 pages of my deepest, darkest secrets. The Guardian. Retrieved from
  17. Englander, E. K. (2015). Coerced sexting and revenge porn among teens. Bullying, Teen Aggression & Social Media, 1(2), 19–21.Google Scholar
  18. Esposito, A., Fortunati, L., & Lugano, G. (2014). Modeling emotion, behavior and context in socially believable robots and ICT interfaces. Cognitive Computation, 6(4), 623–627.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Eurobarometer. (2015). Special Eurobarometer 427: Autonomous systems. European Commission.
  20. Eurobarometer. (2017). Attitudes towards the impact of digitalisation and automation on daily life. Report 460. European Commission.
  21. Fortunati, L., Esposito, A., & Lugano, G. (2015). Introduction to the special issue “Beyond industrial robotics: Social robots entering public and domestic spheres”. The Information Society, 31(3), 229–236.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. FPF. (2017). Data and the connected car. Future Privacy Forum (FPF) Infographic (Version 1.0). Retrieved from
  23. Gross, M. (2018). Watching two billion people. Current Biology, 28(9), 527–530.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Harmon, R. R., Castro-Leon, E. G., & Bhide, S. (2015). Smart cities and the internet of things. In 2015 Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET) (pp. 485–494). IEEE.Google Scholar
  25. Herrmann, M., Boehme, P., Mondritzki, T., Ehlers, J. P., Kavadias, S., & Truebel, H. (2018). Digital transformation and disruption of the health care sector: Internet-based observational study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 20(3), e104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hobbs, M., Owen, S., & Gerber, L. (2017). Liquid love? Dating apps, sex, relationships and the digital transformation of intimacy. Journal of Sociology, 53(2), 271–284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hoy, M. B. (2018). Alexa, Siri, Cortana, and more: An introduction to voice assistants. Medical Reference Services Quarterly, 37(1), 81–88.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hung, M. (2017). Leading the IoT. Gartner insights on how to lead in a connected world. Gartner. Retrieved from
  29. IFR. (2017). World robotics 2017 service robots report. Executive summary. Retrieved from
  30. Jones, A. (2017). Autonomous cars: Navigating the patchwork of data privacy laws that could impact the industry. Catholic University Journal of Law and Technology, 25(1), 6.Google Scholar
  31. Joy, J., & Gerla, M. (2017). Internet of vehicles and autonomous connected car-privacy and security issues. In 2017 26th International Conference on Computer Communication and Networks (ICCCN) (pp. 1–9). IEEE.Google Scholar
  32. Krombholz, K., Hobel, H., Huber, M., & Weippl, E. (2015). Advanced social engineering attacks. Journal of Information Security and Applications, 22, 113–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Krueger, R., Rashidi, T. H., & Rose, J. M. (2016). Preferences for shared autonomous vehicles. Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, 69, 343–355.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kyriakidis, M., Happee, R., & De Winter, J. C. F. (2015). Public opinion on automated driving: Results of an international questionnaire among 5,000 respondents. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 32, 127–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Lugano, G. (2010). Digital community design: Exploring the role of mobile social software in the process of digital convergence (253p). Jyväskylä studies in computing, 114. Jyväskylä: University of Jyväskylä.Google Scholar
  36. Lugano, G. (2017, May). Virtual assistants and self-driving cars. In ITS Telecommunications (ITST), 2017 15th International Conference on (pp. 1–5). IEEE.Google Scholar
  37. Lugano, G., & Saariluoma, P. (2007, July). To share or not to share: Supporting the user decision in mobile social software applications. In International conference on user modeling (pp. 440–444). Berlin, Germany: Springer.Google Scholar
  38. McNeal, R. S., & Schmeida, M. (2015). Digital paranoia: Unfriendly social media climate affecting social networking activities. In Social media and the transformation of interaction in society (pp. 210–227). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Miksch, L., & Schulz, C. (2018). Disconnect to reconnect: The phenomenon of digital detox as a reaction to technology overload. Lund, Sweden: Master’s Program in International Marketing and Brand Management, Lund University.Google Scholar
  40. Murphy, E. (2012). Back to the future: The curious case of United States v. Jones. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, 10, 325.Google Scholar
  41. Nandwani, M., & Kaushal, R. (2017, July). Evaluating user vulnerability to privacy disclosures over online dating platforms. In International conference on innovative mobile and internet services in ubiquitous computing (pp. 342–353). Cham, Switzerland: Springer.Google Scholar
  42. Newman, A. L. (2015). What the “right to be forgotten” means for privacy in a digital age. Science, 347(6221), 507–508.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Pagallo, U. (2016). The impact of domestic robots on privacy and data protection, and the troubles with legal regulation by design. In Data protection on the move (pp. 387–410). Springer, Dordrecht.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Panel, I. C. T. (2002). Digital transformation: A framework for ICT literacy. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service.Google Scholar
  45. Pessoa, L. (2017). Do intelligent robots need emotion? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 21(11), 817–819.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Salem, F. (2016, February 10). Smart city for public value: Digital transformation through agile governance—The case of ‘Smart Dubai’. World Government Summit Publications, Forthcoming. Retrieved from
  47. Seufert, S., & Meier, C. (2016). From eLearning to digital transformation: A framework and implications for L&D. International Journal of Advanced Corporate Learning (iJAC), 9(2), 27–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Sharkey, N., van Wynsberghe, A., Robbins, S., & Hancock, E. (2017). Our sexual future with robots. The Hague, Netherlands: Foundation for Responsible Robotics. Retrieved from
  49. Su, J., Shukla, A., Goel, S., & Narayanan, A. (2017, April). De-anonymizing web browsing data with social networks. In Proceedings of the 26th international conference on world wide web (pp. 1261–1269). Geneva, Switzerland: International World Wide Web Conferences Steering Committee.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Taipale, S. (2009). Transformative technologies, spatial changes. Essays on mobile phones and the Internet (PhD dissertation). University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä.Google Scholar
  51. Ugur, N. G., & Koc, T. (2015). Time for digital detox: Misuse of mobile technology and phubbing. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 195, 1022–1031.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Vincent, J., Taipale, S., Sapio, B., Lugano, G., & Fortunati, L. (Eds.). (2015). Social robots from a human perspective. Berlin, Germany: Springer.Google Scholar
  53. Wajcman, J. (2015). Pressed for time: The acceleration of life in digital capitalism. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  54. Weber, R. H. (2010). Internet of things–new security and privacy challenges. Computer Law & Security Review, 26(1), 23–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. WP29. (2013). Opinion 02/2013 on apps on smart devices. 00461/13/EN WP 202. Article 29 Data Protection Working Party. Adopted on 27 February 2013.Google Scholar
  56. WP29. (2017a). Guidelines on automated individual decision-making and profiling for the purposes of regulation 2016/679. 17/EN WP251rev.01. Article 29 Data Protection Working Party. Last revised and adopted on 6 February 2018.Google Scholar
  57. WP29. (2017b). Opinion 03/2017 on processing personal data in the context of cooperative intelligent transport systems (C-ITS). 17/EN WP 252. Article 29 Data Protection Working Party. Adopted on 4 October 2017.Google Scholar
  58. Yang, Y., Wu, L., Yin, G., Li, L., & Zhao, H. (2017). A survey on security and privacy issues in internet-of-things. IEEE Internet of Things Journal, 4(5), 1250–1258.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giuseppe Lugano
    • 1
    Email author
  • Martin Hudák
    • 1
  • Matúš Ivančo
    • 2
  • Tomáš Loveček
    • 2
  1. 1.ERAdiate teamUniversity of ŽilinaŽilinaSlovakia
  2. 2.Faculty of Security EngineeringUniversity of ŽilinaŽilinaSlovakia

Personalised recommendations