January 25
2021
Dolores Utrilla
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7th January 2021
Covid-19 Data, Tech & IP Human Rights Institutional law

Citizens’ Initiative ‘Civil society initiative for a ban on biometric mass surveillance practices’ registered

Today, the European Commission decided to register a European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) urging. the Commission to propose a legal act to permanently end indiscriminate and arbitrarily-targeted uses of biometric data in ways which can lead to mass surveillance or any undue interference with fundamental rights.

The ECI, entitled ‘Civil society initiative for a ban on biometric mass surveillance practices’, has been found to be legally admissible, as it meets the necessary conditions for registration, namely that (i) it does not manifestly fall outside the framework of the Commission’s powers to submit a proposal for a legal act, (ii) it is not manifestly abusive, frivolous or vexatious, and (iii) it is not manifestly contrary to the values of the EU. The Commission has not yet analysed the ECI’s substance.

The process of collecting signatures can now begin, and if the threshold (of 1 million statements of support within 1 year from at least 7 different Member States) is met, be resubmitted to the Commission for consideration to propose a legal act. The Commission could decide either to follow the request, or not, and in both instances would be required to explain its reasoning.

For more information, read the Commission’s press release.

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