All awardees 2019

Authorities & Administration: Hessian Minister of the Interior, Peter Beuth

The Hessian Minister of the Interior, Peter Beuth, receives the BigBrotherAward 2019 in the “Authorities & Administration” Category for the acquisition and use of an analysis software by Palantir, a company close to the CIA that has consequently gained access to the highly sensitive data networks of Hessian Police. With this software, mass data from police and external sources can automatically be interrelated, analysed and evaluated.

Workplace: Interview – Surveillance and Privacy in the Workplace

Peter Wedde, expert for employment law, will highlight dangerous trends and trend-setting developments in a live interview. Ostensibly there were no major scandals about spying on employees in the last few years, but Peter Wedde points out why workers still face increasing surveillance and what the consequences are. [A transcription of the interview will be published later.]


The company receives the BigBrotherAward 2019 in the Biotechnology Category for enticing people with an interest in genealogy into submitting saliva samples. sells genetic data to commercial pharmaceutical researchers, creates a data source prerequisite for genetic screening by the police and enables covert paternity tests, potentially causing familiy drama.

Technology: “Technical Committee CYBER” of the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI)

The “Technical Committee CYBER” of the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) receives the BigBrotherAward 2019 in the “Technology” Category for its efforts to establish a predetermined breaking point in the new technical standard for encryption on the Internet. The planned standard “ETS” (formerly “eTLS”) will enable government agencies to decrypt intercepted communications.

Consumer Protection: ZEIT Online

The ZEIT newspaper’s online presence receives the BigBrotherAward 2019 in the “Consumer Protection” Category. Firstly, for using advertising trackers and the Facebook Pixel. Second, for the use of Google services in the “Germany Talks” project. This leads to individuals’ political opinions being stored in US servers. Thirdly, for having the succesor project “My Country Talks“ financed by Google. This Faustian pact with one of the biggest data leeches damages journalistic independence.

Audience Award 2019

For the first time, our audience was given the opportunity to answer the traditional question which awardee they had found particularly “impressive, surprising, shocking, or outrageous” online as well as in the hall. Here is the result.

About BigBrotherAwards

The BigBrotherAwards highlight privacy and data protection offenders in business and politics, they have consequently been called “Oscars for data leeches” by the French paper Le Monde.

The German awards are organised and held by  Digitalcourage. Among the co-organisers are the German Association for Data Protection (Deutsche Vereinigung für Datenschutz, DVD), International League for Human Rights and the Chaos Computer Club.

Photos 2019

Images of the gala 2019 will be posted on this German page.