UC Law Science and Technology Journal


Mikayla Domingo


The Supreme Court has gone against the fundamental principle of Stare Decisis in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, holding that the constitution confers no right to an abortion. The aftermath of Dobbs shines a spotlight on how reproductive and feminine health data are exploited to target women. From geolocation monitoring to abortion clinics, to women’s search history and private messages being used in her prosecution, the dystopian prospect of surveillance capitalism is now reality for women in the United States. The immediate impact of Dobbs illuminates the need for greater and clearer data privacy protections have never been more necessary.

However, Dobbs’ impact will reach far beyond women seeking reproductive health care or abortions. While the aftermath of Dobbs has already resulted in an attack on women’s data privacy rights, I argue that the complacency with government and private actor’s intrusion -largely due to underdeveloped data privacy legal rights- into women’s most intimate information will inevitably diminish everyone’s data privacy protections over time. Specifically, I argue that the exploitation of such personal data to target women seeking an abortion sets a precedent that will allow countless other groups to have their personal data exploited for whatever their state deems to be a “legitimate government interest.” This paper highlights the importance of developing more comprehensive data privacy laws and regulations.