Privacy Commission tackles bill on intelligence methods
Friday, 20 May 2016
The Privacy Commission is opposed to mass interception of cable communications. So it emerges from an opinion currently being reviewed by the government, the daily publication Knack reported on Thursday night on its internet site.
During mid-March, the cabinet approved an amendment relating to the review of the law around specific intelligence systems. The latter widens the tools available to both the Belgian State Security Service and the military intelligence services.
The Commission has not drafted amendments for the majority of sensitive elements. There are, however, six points under criticism, in particular mass interception of communication through fibreglass cables. The Belgian General Information and Security Service (GISS) wishes to start these within the next two years. All interested service providers have an obligation to collaborate in this undertaking.
“The Commission is opposed to such a method which allows the GISS to intercept a disproportionately excessive flow of data in the light of the given objective and which starts to strongly resemble mass surveillance.” So it emerges from the non-binding opinion that Knack has had sight of. “Contrary to the explanation given in the opinion, the legislation seems to permit mass data capture.”