Deep web: a challenge for data protection

Napoleon Xanthoulis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The aim of this paper is twofold: First, we take a conceptual approach to the Deep Web. We identify specific terminological difficulties arising out of the interchangeable and non-systematic use of different terms and discuss three misconceptions linked with the notion of Deep Web. Second, we discuss how Deep Web poses challenges to the application of Data Protection Regulations. Our analysis focuses on the household exemption and the right to be forgotten in light of the EU Data Protection Directive and the recent CJEU's jurisprudence. As far as the household exemption is concerned, we discuss how the searchability of information may constitute a criterion in determining whether a piece of information may fall under the provisions of the Data Protection Directive. Furthermore, we discuss how the use of anonymous and pseudonymous information as well as anonymising networks poses obstacles on the application of the accessibility criterion required in deciding whether the household exemption shall be put into effect. With regards to the right to be forgotten, we analyse the impact of the recent CJEU's Google Spain judgment and explain the potential effect and challenges of the right‟s application in relation to the Deep Web and anonymising networks.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLifting Barriers and Empowering the Future of Information Law and Ethics
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 6th International Conference Information Law and Ethics
EditorsEugenia Alexandropoulou-Egyptiadou, Maria Bottis, Ioannis Iglezakis
Place of PublicationThessaloniki
PublisherUniversity of Macedonia Press
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Event6th International Conference on Information Law and Ethics: Lifting Barriers to Empower the Future of Information Law and Ethics - Thessaloniki, Greece
Duration: 30 May 201431 May 2014


Conference6th International Conference on Information Law and Ethics
Abbreviated titleICIL 2014


  • Deep Web
  • Dark Web
  • Surface Web
  • TOR
  • Data Protection
  • search engine
  • Google Spain


Dive into the research topics of 'Deep web: a challenge for data protection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this