Verena Fulde


"It's about us as people. Not data or technology."

In today's times of ongoing digitalization and advances in artificial intelligence, consumer protection and data privacy are becoming increasingly important. Nearly everyone is a member of a social network, surfs the web, or shops online. As we do so, we leave data trails everywhere. How can we prevent these individual impressions from being put together to form complex profiles, which in the worst case could even be used against us?

Artificial intelligence and consumer protection

We spoke about this with Katarina Barley Germany's Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection. "AI and consumer protection belong together. It's essential to combine the two from the start. That means when the AI is being developed, you have to think about which interests of the users, of the consumers, have to be protected", she emphasized.

Barley debates what specific forms these protections can take in the "Corporate Digital Responsibility" initiative she launched last year. Its members are "companies that already take digital responsibility today."

The objective of the initiative is to define basic principles and concepts for corporate digital responsibility.

In addition to Miele, the Otto Group, SAP, Telefónica Deutschland, and DIE ZEIT, Deutsche Telekom is also on board, of course, represented by Thomas Kremer, Member of the Board of Management for Data Privacy, Legal Affairs and Compliance.

"Responsible handling of the opportunities and risks of the digital world is a central aspect of what we do. Data privacy, media skills, ethical use of new technologies – we have to shape all of this for the digital future," he says about his commitment.

The focus must always remain on the individual. Barley puts it like this: "The rights of people have to be guaranteed. It always has to be about us as people first. Not data or technology. We're the central figure."

The full interview with Minister Barley is available here.

We hope you enjoy watching!

Artificial intelligence and consumer protection

It's about us as people

AI and big data can use our data trails to build complex profiles of us. But what about consumer protection? German Federal minister Katarina Barley provides answers.