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European Policy, Government Surveillance

CDT Joins Letter on the Proposed French Law on the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games

The Centre for Democracy & Technology Europe (CDT Europe) joined an open letter led by the European Center for not for Profit Law, La Quadrature du Net and Amnesty International France, alongside 37 civil society organisations expressing concerns regarding Article 7 of the proposed law on the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games (projet de loi relatif aux jeux Olympiques et Paralympiques de 2024), which would create a legal basis for the use of algorithm-driven cameras to detect specific suspicious events in public spaces. The letter calls on the Assemblée Nationale to consider rejecting Article 7 and to open up the issue for further discussion with civil society.

From the letter:

The mere existence of untargeted (often called indiscriminate) algorithmic video surveillance in publicly accessible areas can have a chilling effect on fundamental civic freedoms, especially the right to freedom of assembly, association and expression. As noted by the European Data Protection Board and the European Data Protection Supervisor, biometric surveillance stifles people’s reasonable expectation of anonymity in public spaces and reduces their will and ability to exercise their civic freedoms, for fear of being identified, profiled or even wrongly prosecuted. As such, this measure threatens the very essence of the right to privacy and data protection, which is incompatible with international and European human rights law”.

Le Monde’s article covering the open letter. 

Read the full letter [PDF] here.