The EU executive will help countries work on encryption-breaking for when law enforcement has legal access to the information as part of a strategy to fight organised crime presented on Wednesday (14 April).
The European Commission has issued assurances to MEPs that Europol's new decryption platform will not be used to abuse data protection standards and will maintain closely guarded access rights over the data retrieved.
Police said Wednesday (10 March) they had arrested at least 80 people and carried out hundreds of raids in two European countries after shutting down an encrypted phone network used by organised crime groups.
The "Five Eyes" intelligence alliance demanded Sunday that tech companies insert "backdoors" in encrypted apps to allow law enforcement agencies the access they say they need to police online criminality.
MEPs approved stricter rules on Wednesday (17 January) to control how European companies export technologies including software that could be used for surveillance, and any products that may violate human rights.
MEPs are pressuring the European Commission to propose new cyber crime rules on hacking vulnerabilities, encryption and information sharing between EU countries, ahead of a legal overhaul planned for September.
On the eve of an EU summit, leaders from 17 EU countries have asked European Council President Donald Tusk for highest-level talks on EU digital policy, saying it was the single market’s main engine and should receive stronger political support.
Mariya Gabriel, the 38-year-old Bulgarian MEP tipped to become the new EU digital chief, told MEPs during her approval hearing that she wants to “comply” with the European Commission's policy priorities.
The European Commission will propose new measures in June to make it easier for police to access data on internet messaging apps like WhatsApp, EU Justice Commissioner Věra Jourová said yesterday (28 March), heeding calls from national interior ministers.
A year after the Brussels attacks, Gilles de Kerchove told EURACTIV.com about the fast pace of development of EU security policy, calling for the “systematic use of biometrics” and “batch comparison” of databases in order to boost security in the Schengen area.
Andrus Ansip, the EU's tech policy chief, insisted today that he is against laws that weaken encryption technology, but also that there is no “black and white” solution to help law enforcement authorities access secured data in investigations.