The police and military will now be able to jam phone calls, La Dernière Heure newspaper reported on Tuesday. A just-passed law on electronic communication extends the use of jammers to many services to help in the fight against terrorism and crime. Jammers are devices used to scramble frequencies. Thus far, the army and penitentiaries were authorized to use them within limits. From now on, the special units and Canine Support Directorate of the Federal Police, State Security, SEDEE (military demining service), Military Intelligence Service, Foreign Affairs Department and Home Affairs Department may also use them.
The conditions governing the use of the jammers are very strict. Since they can also hamper the functioning of nearby networks, they are to be used only on an exceptional basis “to better protect the population and public interest”.
For the SEDEE’s de-miners, for instance, jammers can prevent an explosive ordnance from blowing up when it is remotely controlled. For the special units of the federal police, they can be used to prevent communication between criminals at precise times, including during planned attacks.