In parliamentary questions to the European Commission Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) addresses concerns about the impact of EU exported surveillance- and lawful intercept technologies on the EU’s security and strategic interests.
Schaake wants to know whether the Commission is aware of the potential threat these exported and ‘Made in Europe’ technologies pose for the EU’s own critical (ICT) infrastructure, business interests and security, and whether any action has been taken to mitigate the dangers.
“I have been campaigning vigorously to stop the export of surveillance and interception technology from within the European Union to countries where repressive regimes use them to trample citizen’s rights and freedoms. When in the wrong hands, these technologies prove effective weapons. Meaning they can also backfire on the EU’s own security and strategic interest. Another reason to stop the digital arms trade”, Schaake says.
On Schaake’s initiative, the European Parliament last December adopted the first ‘Digital freedom strategy in the EU’s foreign policy‘. Schaake: “It is essential that we keep realizing what it is that we seek to protect: people’s digital freedoms in relation to technology and open societies as a whole. We cannot ignore vulnerabilities but have to address them together with businesses in an open and transparent manner.”