European Biometric Identity Repository Project - National Security Trumps Privacy?

Media Coverage | May 15, 2019

European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect on 28 May 2018, after years of deliberations inside and outside the EU parliament, and in all major economies of the world. That global data flows contribute to global GDP, and data driven innovation (DDI) are critical to individual economies is well recognized. Several studies show that the AI adoption in countries will nearly double the GDP growth rate of advanced economies in 10-15 years. Much has been talked about the conflict between DDI and privacy violation of individuals, while GDPR was in the making.

GDPR implementation has barely started. So, it’s with surprise and disbelief that the world has woken up to the news of the European Parliament voting for a Common Identity Repository (CIR), which will amass biometrics and identity data of over 350 million EU and non-EU citizens, for enabling border control, and for law-enforcement access for national security and public safety. Two different resolutions were passed by the Parliament with over two third majority, in third week of April 2019. The first one was to merge visas and border systems; the other was to merge systems with law-enforcement, judicial, migration, and asylum information. An idea for inter-connectivity among EU databases has transformed into a centralised EU database, which will help simplify the role of border officers and law-enforcement agencies. With a single click they will be able to uniquely identify someone.

Click here to read the full article on the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) website.