Digital searches as an impulse for constitutional evolution – the example of Germany

The extensive access to comprehensive, personality-related data, that is inherent in a digital search of computers and mobile devices, poses unprecedented challenges to the protection of personality under fundamental rights. It is fair to assume that hardly any constitution explicitly address these new threats, which thus demand adaptations of fundamental rights protection to the digitalisation of life and its scrutiny. In German law, the Federal Constitutional Court has assumed this responsibility. The example of its jurisdiction shall be used to show how constitutional protection can increasingly be aligned with the risks of digitalisation for personal privacy.