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Enterprises that must comply with GDPR need to view artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning as tools for scaling their long-term compliance effort, rather than tools for extracting short-term value from data subjects.


  • In Ovum’s 2017/18 ICT Enterprise Insights survey of nearly 5,000 enterprise decision-makers, 71.3% of respondents reported that their organization was planning, trialing, or had already fully deployed AI for decision-making.
  • GDPR places heavy restrictions on the use of automated decision-making when those decisions are likely to have a significant effect on data subjects, limiting the use cases for AI within the enterprise.
  • While AI's interaction with data subjects remains restricted, AI embedded within compliance-related technology will be a critical factor in scaling to modern volumes of data and achieving "data protection by design and by default."

Features and Benefits

  • Identifies key enterprise adoption and deployment trends for artificial intelligence technologies.
  • Evaluates the restrictions that GDPR places on automated decision-making, and analyzes how these restrictions impact automation technology.
  • Identifies data subjects' rights regarding the use of automated decision-making, and interprets the effects on the enterprise.
  • Identifies enterprise use cases in which "black box" artificial intelligence technology may be considered compliant with GDPR.
  • Compares automated and manual approaches for the detection and protection of personal information for compliance with GDPR.

Key questions answered

  • What is the current adoption rate for AI technologies within the enterprise, and what is the most common use case?
  • Why is "black box" AI technology potentially noncompliant with GDPR?
  • Why does use of AI within compliance-related technology enjoy more freedom from GDPR requirements of transparency?
  • Why will AI and automation be necessary within compliance-related technology in order to achieve data protection by design at scale?
  • What strategies can the enterprise employ to ensure that use of AI and automation remain compliant with GDPR?

Table of contents

Ovum view

  • Summary
  • The time to formulate enterprise automation strategy is now
  • Under GDPR, are "black box" algorithms always bad?
  • Automation within compliance efforts is critical to scale


  • Further reading
  • Author

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