EU Parliament agreed to interconnect a series of border-control, migration, and law enforcement systems into a gigantic, biometrics-tracking, searchable database of EU and non-EU citizens called the Common Identity Repository (CIR).
Combining biometric samples of persons to enable biometric identifications, the Common Identity Repository would combine biographical identities of persons (name, gender, date of birth) to unify records on over 350 million people.
“The systems covered by the new rules would include the Schengen Information System, Eurodac, the Visa Information System (VIS) and three new systems: the European Criminal Records System for Third Country Nationals (ECRIS-TCN), the Entry/Exit System (EES) and the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS),” EU officials said. All of this data will be made available to all law enforcement agencies from the 27 EU member states, simplifying the jobs of EU border and law enforcement officers who will be able to search a unified system much faster, rather than search through separate databases individually.
“Whereas security concerns represent a genuine public interest, combining data from various previously independent sources always increases the risks for rights and freedoms,” comments Dr Bostjan Makarovic, Aphaia Managing Partner.
The European Parliament and the European Council promised “proper safeguards” to protect people’s right to privacy and regulate officers’ access to data. If the European Council approves the law passed by the European Parliament, then all member states will have to implement it within two years.