• An Unelected Monarch Is Shaping Our Public Life. His Name Is Mark Zuckerberg
    https://onezero.medium.com/an-unelected-monarch-is-shaping-our-public-life-his-name-is-mark-zuc

    The most important election this year has only one voter If it’s not the single most powerful individual position in the world, it only has a few rivals. Think general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party. Or the Pope. Or chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve. Or maybe the crown prince of Saudi Arabia. It’s a position that’s been embroiled in a contentious conversation for years now about the scope, and possibly criminal misuse, of the current incumbent’s power : the ability to encourage wars (...)

    #Facebook #domination #BigData #élections

  • La CNIL lance une enquête sur TikTok
    https://www.lemonde.fr/tiktok/article/2020/08/11/la-cnil-lance-une-enquete-sur-tiktok_6048695_6013190.html

    L’autorité française a reçu une plainte au mois de mai concernant l’application chinoise menacée d’une interdiction aux Etats-Unis. TikTok est également sous le feu des projecteurs en France. Déjà bannie en Inde et menacée d’une interdiction aux Etats-Unis, l’application détenue par l’entreprise chinoise ByteDance fait l’objet d’une enquête de la part de la Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL), a révélé l’agence américaine Bloomberg, mardi 11 août. Contactée par Le Monde, la CNIL (...)

    #enfants #données #BigData #TikTok #ByteDance #CNIL

  • Tout ce que vous avez toujours voulu savoir sur l’économie des sites de rencontres (sans jamais oser le demander)
    https://theconversation.com/tout-ce-que-vous-avez-toujours-voulu-savoir-sur-leconomie-des-sites

    Vous êtes en quête d’une relation durable ou d’une rencontre sans lendemain ? Inscrivez-vous à Tinder ou à Bumble. Ou encore, si vos préférences sont nettement plus ciblées, à GlutenfFreeSingles ou ClownDating. Les algorithmes ont remplacé les agences matrimoniales et la drague à l’ancienne. L’analyse économique s’était risquée sans données à échafauder une théorie du mariage, l’explosion des sites de rencontres a depuis tourné la tête de bien des économètres. Savez-vous qu’un mariage sur trois aujourd’hui aux (...)

    #Match #AshleyMadison #Grindr #Match.com #Meetic #OkCupid #Tinder #algorithme #données #BigData #DataBrokers #femmes #hacking (...)

    ##LGBT

  • The original Big Tech is working closer than ever with governments to combat coronavirus – with no scrutiny
    https://thecorrespondent.com/621/the-original-big-tech-is-working-closer-than-ever-with-governments-to-combat-coronavirus-with-no-scrutiny/82188228474-f3c13bea

    Telecom companies are at the core of the world’s communication universe. Since the coronavirus pandemic, they’ve been passing even more sensitive data to governments. It’s time they were held as accountable as Google and Facebook. The texts can arrive at any time. Recipients are told they’ve been exposed to the coronavirus and must immediately begin a two-week period of isolation. For some, the frustration of knowing the routines of daily life must suddenly stop can be exacerbated by the fact (...)

    #Apple #GCHQ #Google #Orange #ShinBet #Telenor #Verizon #Vodafone #FBI #NSA #AT&T #Bluetooth #smartphone #WiFi #5G #contactTracing #géolocalisation #technologisme #consentement #données #FAI #BigData #COVID-19 #DataBrokers #GAFAM #santé (...)

    ##AT&T ##santé ##PrivacyInternational ##PublicKnowledge

  • « Si les Etats-Unis interdisaient TikTok, ce serait le début d’une plus sérieuse balkanisation d’Internet »
    https://www.lemonde.fr/pixels/article/2020/08/07/interdire-completement-tiktok-aux-etats-unis-serait-inconstitutionnel_604837

    Eva Galperin, membre de l’association Electronic Frontier Foundation, revient sur les actions entreprises par Donald Trump en vue d’interdire l’application chinoise sur le territoire américain. La situation se complique encore pour TikTok aux Etats-Unis. Après avoir annoncé qu’il comptait interdire la populaire application sur le territoire américain, Donald Trump est passé à l’acte et a signé, jeudi 6 août, un décret présidentiel ouvrant la voie à la limitation de l’usage du réseau social dans le pays, (...)

    #Apple #ByteDance #Google #Microsoft #TikTok #BigData #EFF

  • L’œil inquisiteur du régime chinois
    https://www.lemonde.fr/series-d-ete/article/2020/08/10/l-il-inquisiteur-du-regime-chinois_6048568_3451060.html

    Enquête« La preuve par l’image » (1/5). Comment des Etats, des particuliers ou des groupes de pression s’appuient sur l’image pour se protéger ou établir une vérité. Dans cet épisode, la Chine, où la vidéo-surveillance massive joue un rôle central dans le contrôle de la population. Ou encore dans la répression de la minorité ouïgoure. L’image pourrait être tirée d’une adaptation high-tech de 1984, la dystopie d’Orwell : de simples badauds, traversant un passage piéton, identifiés automatiquement par les (...)

    #Alibaba #Huawei #Tencent #algorithme #CCTV #QRcode #smartphone #SIM #biométrie #criminalité #facial #reconnaissance #vidéo-surveillance #BigData #discrimination #immatriculation #Islam #SocialCreditSystem #SocialNetwork #surveillance (...)

    ##criminalité ##_

  • It Doesn’t Matter Who Owns TikTok
    https://gizmodo.com/it-doesn-t-matter-who-owns-tiktok-1844595163

    When Microsoft officially emerged as the frontrunner for a potential acquisition of the teen-fave-turned-national-security-concern TikTok earlier this week, tech critics ‘round the globe found themselves with an endless set of questions that seemingly nobody could answer. Why would a company as corporate as Microsoft be throwing its hat into the tweenage market ? Did President Donald Trump seriously just ask for the U.S. Treasury to get a cut of what’s promising to be a multibillion-dollar (...)

    #publicité #microtargeting #DataBrokers #BigData #données #Facebook #TikTok #Microsoft #Google (...)

    ##publicité ##ByteDance

  • Real corporate accountability for surveillance capitalism with Shoshana Zuboff and Chris Gilliard
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FX2g6xPeftA&list=PLprTandRM961s376IH8TmvbThcxjfPNwL&index=8&t=0s

    In conversation with Shoshana Zuboff, Charles Edward Wilson Professor Emerita at Harvard Business School, and author of The Age of Surveillance Capitalism ; and Chris Gilliard, Professor of English at Macomb Community College. Facilitators include Joe Westby, researcher and advisor at Amnesty International ; and Nathalie Marechal, Senior Policy Analyst at Ranking Digital Rights. In 2014, Shoshana Zuboff coined the term “surveillance capitalism” to describe the now-ubiquitous business model (...)

    #surveillance #santé #BigData #reconnaissance #prédiction #facial #données #biométrie (...)

    ##santé ##algorithme

  • Bruxelles lance une « enquête approfondie » sur le possible rachat de Fitbit par Google
    https://www.lemonde.fr/economie/article/2020/08/04/la-commission-europeenne-lance-une-enquete-approfondie-sur-le-rachat-de-fitb

    La Commission européenne s’inquiète de transferts de données qui pourraient renforcer la position dominante de Google, s’il acquiert ce spécialiste des objets connectés pour le sport. La Commission européenne a annoncé, mardi 4 août, qu’elle allait ouvrir une « enquête approfondie » sur le projet de rachat par Google de Fitbit, spécialiste des objets connectés pour les activités physiques. La Commission « craint que l’opération proposée ne renforce encore la position de Google sur les marchés de la (...)

    #Fitbit #Google #bracelet #données #BigData #santé #sport #wearable

    ##santé

  • Opioids and Public Health | Journal of Ethics | American Medical Association
    https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/issue/opioids-and-public-health

    Manufacturers of prescription opioids offered assurance in the mid-to-late 1990s that these drugs wouldn’t make patients with pain into patients with substance use disorders. Some physicians believed them and prescribed these drugs without appropriate regard for their addictiveness, contributing to prescription and street opioid misuse that has reached alarming proportions. This issue considers ethical questions that contextualize the opioid epidemic from social, cultural, and policy-based perspectives and illuminates potential solutions.
    Volume 22, Number 8: E645-750

    Le dernier numéro en date du journal d’éthique de l’American Medical Association. Son contenu confirme ce que Patrick Radden Keefe a montré dans « Addiction sur ordonnance » (traduit et publié par C&F éditions). Notamment un article par Andrew Kolodny sur le rôle (par inaction et complaisance) de la Food and Drug administration dans le déclenchement de la crise, une auteur largement cité par P.R. Keefe.

    #Opioides #FDA #Ethique #Big_pharma #Régulation

    • EU: Frontex splashes out: millions of euros for new technology and equipment (19.06.2020)

      The approval of the new #Frontex_Regulation in November 2019 implied an increase of competences, budget and capabilities for the EU’s border agency, which is now equipping itself with increased means to monitor events and developments at the borders and beyond, as well as renewing its IT systems to improve the management of the reams of data to which it will have access.

      In 2020 Frontex’s #budget grew to €420.6 million, an increase of over 34% compared to 2019. The European Commission has proposed that in the next EU budget (formally known as the Multiannual Financial Framework or MFF, covering 2021-27) €11 billion will be made available to the agency, although legal negotiations are ongoing and have hit significant stumbling blocks due to Brexit, the COVID-19 pandemic and political disagreements.

      Nevertheless, the increase for this year has clearly provided a number of opportunities for Frontex. For instance, it has already agreed contracts worth €28 million for the acquisition of dozens of vehicles equipped with thermal and day cameras, surveillance radar and sensors.

      According to the contract for the provision of Mobile Surveillance Systems, these new tools will be used “for detection, identification and recognising of objects of interest e.g. human beings and/or groups of people, vehicles moving across the border (land and sea), as well as vessels sailing within the coastal areas, and other objects identified as objects of interest”. [1]

      Frontex has also published a call for tenders for Maritime Analysis Tools, worth a total of up to €2.6 million. With this, Frontex seeks to improve access to “big data” for maritime analysis. [2] The objective of deploying these tools is to enhance Frontex’s operational support to EU border, coast guard and law enforcement authorities in “suppressing and preventing, among others, illegal migration and cross-border crime in the maritime domain”.

      Moreover, the system should be capable of delivering analysis and identification of high-risk threats following the collection and storage of “big data”. It is not clear how much human input and monitoring there will be of the identification of risks. The call for tenders says the winning bidder should have been announced in May, but there is no public information on the chosen company so far.

      As part of a 12-month pilot project to examine how maritime analysis tools could “support multipurpose operational response,” Frontex previously engaged the services of the Tel Aviv-based company Windward Ltd, which claims to fuse “maritime data and artificial intelligence… to provide the right insights, with the right context, at the right time.” [3] Windward, whose current chairman is John Browne, the former CEO of the multinational oil company BP, received €783,000 for its work. [4]

      As the agency’s gathering and processing of data increases, it also aims to improve and develop its own internal IT systems, through a two-year project worth €34 million. This will establish a set of “framework contracts”. Through these, each time the agency seeks a new IT service or system, companies selected to participate in the framework contracts will submit bids for the work. [5]

      The agency is also seeking a ’Software Solution for EBCG [European Border and Coast Guard] Team Members to Access to Schengen Information System’, through a contract worth up to €5 million. [6] The Schengen Information System (SIS) is the EU’s largest database, enabling cooperation between authorities working in the fields of police, border control and customs of all the Schengen states (26 EU member states plus Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland) and its legal bases were recently reformed to include new types of alert and categories of data. [7]

      This software will give Frontex officials direct access to certain data within the SIS. Currently, they have to request access via national border guards in the country in which they are operating. This would give complete autonomy to Frontex officials to consult the SIS whilst undertaking operations, shortening the length of the procedure. [8]

      With the legal basis for increasing Frontex’s powers in place, the process to build up its personnel, material and surveillance capacities continues, with significant financial implications.

      https://www.statewatch.org/news/2020/june/eu-frontex-splashes-out-millions-of-euros-for-new-technology-and-equipme

      #technologie #équipement #Multiannual_Financial_Framework #MFF #surveillance #Mobile_Surveillance_Systems #Maritime_Analysis_Tools #données #big_data #mer #Windward_Ltd #Israël #John_Browne #BP #complexe_militaro-industriel #Software_Solution_for_EBCG_Team_Members_to_Access_to_Schengen_Information_System #SIS #Schengen_Information_System

    • EU : Guns, guards and guidelines : reinforcement of Frontex runs into problems (26.05.2020)

      An internal report circulated by Frontex to EU government delegations highlights a series of issues in implementing the agency’s new legislation. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the agency is urging swift action to implement the mandate and is pressing ahead with the recruitment of its new ‘standing corps’. However, there are legal problems with the acquisition, registration, storage and transport of weapons. The agency is also calling for derogations from EU rules on staff disciplinary measures in relation to the use of force; and wants an extended set of privileges and immunities. Furthermore, it is assisting with “voluntary return” despite this activity appearing to fall outside of its legal mandate.

      State-of-play report

      At the end of April 2020, Frontex circulated a report to EU government delegations in the Council outlining the state of play of the implementation of its new Regulation (“EBCG 2.0 Regulation”, in the agency and Commission’s words), especially relating to “current challenges”.[1] Presumably, this refers to the outbreak of a pandemic, though the report also acknowledges challenges created by the legal ambiguities contained in the Regulation itself, in particular with regard to the acquisition of weapons, supervisory and disciplinary mechanisms, legal privileges and immunities and involvement in “voluntary return” operations.

      The path set out in the report is that the “operational autonomy of the agency will gradually increase towards 2027” until it is a “fully-fledged and reliable partner” to EU and Schengen states. It acknowledges the impacts of unforeseen world events on the EU’s forthcoming budget (Multi-annual Financial Framework, MFF) for 2021-27, and hints at the impact this will have on Frontex’s own budget and objectives. Nevertheless, the agency is still determined to “continue increasing the capabilities” of the agency, including its acquisition of new equipment and employment of new staff for its standing corps.

      The main issues covered by the report are: Frontex’s new standing corps of staff, executive powers and the use of force, fundamental rights and data protection, and the integration into Frontex of EUROSUR, the European Border Surveillance System.

      The new standing corps

      Recruitment

      A new standing corps of 10,000 Frontex staff by 2024 is to be, in the words of the agency, its “biggest game changer”.[2] The report notes that the establishment of the standing corps has been heavily affected by the outbreak of Covid-19. According to the report, 7,238 individuals had applied to join the standing corps before the outbreak of the pandemic. 5,482 of these – over 75% – were assessed by the agency as eligible, with a final 304 passing the entire selection process to be on the “reserve lists”.[3]

      Despite interruptions to the recruitment procedure following worldwide lockdown measures, interviews for Category 1 staff – permanent Frontex staff members to be deployed on operations – were resumed via video by the end of April. 80 candidates were shortlisted for the first week, and Frontex aims to interview 1,000 people in total. Despite this adaptation, successful candidates will have to wait for Frontex’s contractor to re-open in order to carry out medical tests, an obligatory requirement for the standing corps.[4]

      In 2020, Frontex joined the European Defence Agency’s Satellite Communications (SatCom) and Communications and Information System (CIS) services in order to ensure ICT support for the standing corps in operation as of 2021.[5] The EDA describes SatCom and CIS as “fundamental for Communication, Command and Control in military operations… [enabling] EU Commanders to connect forces in remote areas with HQs and capitals and to manage the forces missions and tasks”.[6]

      Training

      The basic training programme, endorsed by the management board in October 2019, is designed for Category 1 staff. It includes specific training in interoperability and “harmonisation with member states”. The actual syllabus, content and materials for this basic training were developed by March 2020; Statewatch has made a request for access to these documents, which is currently pending with the Frontex Transparency Office. This process has also been affected by the novel coronavirus, though the report insists that “no delay is foreseen in the availability of the specialised profile related training of the standing corps”.

      Use of force

      The state-of-play-report acknowledges a number of legal ambiguities surrounding some of the more controversial powers outlined in Frontex’s 2019 Regulation, highlighting perhaps that political ambition, rather than serious consideration and assessment, propelled the legislation, overtaking adequate procedure and oversight. The incentive to enact the legislation within a short timeframe is cited as a reason that no impact assessment was carried out on the proposed recast to the agency’s mandate. This draft was rushed through negotiations and approved in an unprecedented six-month period, and the details lost in its wake are now coming to light.

      Article 82 of the 2019 Regulation refers to the use of force and carriage of weapons by Frontex staff, while a supervisory mechanism for the use of force by statutory staff is established by Article 55. This says:

      “On the basis of a proposal from the executive director, the management board shall: (a) establish an appropriate supervisory mechanism to monitor the application of the provisions on use of force by statutory staff, including rules on reporting and specific measures, such as those of a disciplinary nature, with regard to the use of force during deployments”[7]

      The agency’s management board is expected to make a decision about this supervisory mechanism, including specific measures and reporting, by the end of June 2020.

      The state-of-play report posits that the legal terms of Article 55 are inconsistent with the standard rules on administrative enquiries and disciplinary measures concerning EU staff.[8] These outline, inter alia, that a dedicated disciplinary board will be established in each institution including at least one member from outside the institution, that this board must be independent and its proceedings secret. Frontex insists that its staff will be a special case as the “first uniformed service of the EU”, and will therefore require “special arrangements or derogations to the Staff Regulations” to comply with the “totally different nature of tasks and risks associated with their deployments”.[9]

      What is particularly astounding about Frontex demanding special treatment for oversight, particularly on use of force and weapons is that, as the report acknowledges, the agency cannot yet legally store or transport any weapons it acquires.

      Regarding service weapons and “non-lethal equipment”,[10] legal analysis by “external experts and a regulatory law firm” concluded that the 2019 Regulation does not provide a legal basis for acquiring, registering, storing or transporting weapons in Poland, where the agency’s headquarters is located. Frontex has applied to the Commission for clarity on how to proceed, says the report. Frontex declined to comment on the status of this consultation and any indications of the next steps the agency will take. A Commission spokesperson stated only that it had recently received the agency’s enquiry and “is analysing the request and the applicable legal framework in the view of replying to the EBCGA”, without expanding further.

      Until Frontex has the legal basis to do so, it cannot launch a tender for firearms and “non-lethal equipment” (which includes batons, pepper spray and handcuffs). However, the report implies the agency is ready to do so as soon as it receives the green light. Technical specifications are currently being finalised for “non-lethal equipment” and Frontex still plans to complete acquisition by the end of the year.

      Privileges and immunities

      The agency is also seeking special treatment with regard to the legal privileges and immunities it and its officials enjoy. Article 96 of the 2019 Regulation outlines the privileges and immunities of Frontex officers, stating:

      “Protocol No 7 on the Privileges and Immunities of the European Union annexed to the Treaty on European Union (TEU) and to the TFEU shall apply to the Agency and its statutory staff.” [11]

      However, Frontex notes that the Protocol does not apply to non-EU states, nor does it “offer a full protection, or take into account a need for the inviolability of assets owned by Frontex (service vehicles, vessels, aircraft)”.[12] Frontex is increasingly involved in operations taking place on non-EU territory. For instance, the Council of the EU has signed or initialled a number of Status Agreements with non-EU states, primarily in the Western Balkans, concerning Frontex activities in those countries. To launch operations under these agreements, Frontex will (or, in the case of Albania, already has) agree on operational plans with each state, under which Frontex staff can use executive powers.[13] The agency therefore seeks an “EU-level status of forces agreement… to account for the partial absence of rules”.

      Law enforcement

      To implement its enhanced functions regarding cross-border crime, Frontex will continue to participate in Europol’s four-year policy cycle addressing “serious international and organised crime”.[14] The agency is also developing a pilot project, “Investigation Support Activities- Cross Border Crime” (ISA-CBC), addressing drug trafficking and terrorism.

      Fundamental rights and data protection

      The ‘EBCG 2.0 Regulation’ requires several changes to fundamental rights measures by the agency, which, aside from some vague “legal analyses” seem to be undergoing development with only internal oversight.

      Firstly, to facilitate adequate independence of the Fundamental Rights Officer (FRO), special rules have to be established. The FRO was introduced under Frontex’s 2016 Regulation, but has since then been understaffed and underfunded by the agency.[15] The 2019 Regulation obliges the agency to ensure “sufficient and adequate human and financial resources” for the office, as well as 40 fundamental rights monitors.[16] These standing corps staff members will be responsible for monitoring compliance with fundamental rights standards, providing advice and assistance on the agency’s plans and activities, and will visit and evaluate operations, including acting as forced return monitors.[17]

      During negotiations over the proposed Regulation 2.0, MEPs introduced extended powers for the Fundamental Rights Officer themselves. The FRO was previously responsible for contributing to Frontex’s fundamental rights strategy and monitoring its compliance with and promotion of fundamental rights. Now, they will be able to monitor compliance by conducting investigations; offering advice where deemed necessary or upon request of the agency; providing opinions on operational plans, pilot projects and technical assistance; and carrying out on-the-spot visits. The executive director is now obliged to respond “as to how concerns regarding possible violations of fundamental rights… have been addressed,” and the management board “shall ensure that action is taken with regard to recommendations of the fundamental rights officer.” [18] The investigatory powers of the FRO are not, however, set out in the Regulation.

      The state-of-play report says that “legal analyses and exchanges” are ongoing, and will inform an eventual management board decision, but no timeline for this is offered. [19] The agency will also need to adapt its much criticised individual complaints mechanism to fit the requirements of the 2019 Regulation; executive director Fabrice Leggeri’s first-draft decision on this process is currently undergoing internal consultations. Even the explicit requirement set out in the 2019 Regulation for an “independent and effective” complaints mechanism,[20] does not meet minimum standards to qualify as an effective remedy, which include institutional independence, accessibility in practice, and capacity to carry out thorough and prompt investigations.[21]

      Frontex has entered into a service level agreement (SLA) with the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) for support in establishing and training the team of fundamental rights monitors introduced by the 2019 Regulation. These monitors are to be statutory staff of the agency and will assess fundamental rights compliance of operational activities, advising, assisting and contributing to “the promotion of fundamental rights”.[22] The scope and objectives for this team were finalised at the end of March this year, and the agency will establish the team by the end of the year. Statewatch has requested clarification as to what is to be included in the team’s scope and objectives, pending with the Frontex Transparency Office.

      Regarding data protection, the agency plans a package of implementing rules (covering issues ranging from the position of data protection officer to the restriction of rights for returnees and restrictions under administrative data processing) to be implemented throughout 2020.[23] The management board will review a first draft of the implementing rules on the data protection officer in the second quarter of 2020.

      Returns

      The European Return and Reintegration Network (ERRIN) – a network of 15 European states and the Commission facilitating cooperation over return operations “as part of the EU efforts to manage migration” – is to be handed over to Frontex. [24] A handover plan is currently under the final stage of review; it reportedly outlines the scoping of activities and details of “which groups of returnees will be eligible for Frontex assistance in the future”.[25] A request from Statewatch to Frontex for comment on what assistance will be provided by the agency to such returnees was unanswered at the time of publication.

      Since the entry into force of its new mandate, Frontex has also been providing technical assistance for so-called voluntary returns, with the first two such operations carried out on scheduled flights (as opposed to charter flights) in February 2020. A total of 28 people were returned by mid-April, despite the fact that there is no legal clarity over what the definition “voluntary return” actually refers to, as the state-of-play report also explains:

      “The terminology of voluntary return was introduced in the Regulation without providing any definition thereof. This terminology (voluntary departure vs voluntary return) is moreover not in line with the terminology used in the Return Directive (EBCG 2.0 refers to the definition of returns provided for in the Return Directive. The Return Directive, however, does not cover voluntary returns; a voluntary return is not a return within the meaning of the Return Directive). Further elaboration is needed.”[26]

      On top of requiring “further clarification”, if Frontex is assisting with “voluntary returns” that are not governed by the Returns Directive, it is acting outside of its legal mandate. Statewatch has launched an investigation into the agency’s activities relating to voluntary returns, to outline the number of such operations to date, their country of return and country of destination.

      Frontex is currently developing a module dedicated to voluntary returns by charter flight for its FAR (Frontex Application for Returns) platform (part of its return case management system). On top of the technical support delivered by the agency, Frontex also foresees the provision of on-the-ground support from Frontex representatives or a “return counsellor”, who will form part of the dedicated return teams planned for the standing corps from 2021.[27]

      Frontex has updated its return case management system (RECAMAS), an online platform for member state authorities and Frontex to communicate and plan return operations, to manage an increased scope. The state-of-play report implies that this includes detail on post-return activities in a new “post-return module”, indicating that Frontex is acting on commitments to expand its activity in this area. According to the agency’s roadmap on implementing the 2019 Regulation, an action plan on how the agency will provide post-return support to people (Article 48(1), 2019 Regulation) will be written by the third quarter of 2020.[28]

      In its closing paragraph, related to the budgetary impact of COVID-19 regarding return operations, the agency notes that although activities will resume once aerial transportation restrictions are eased, “the agency will not be able to provide what has been initially intended, undermining the concept of the EBCG as a whole”.[29]

      EUROSUR

      The Commission is leading progress on adopting the implementing act for the integration of EUROSUR into Frontex, which will define the implementation of new aerial surveillance,[30] expected by the end of the year.[31] Frontex is discussing new working arrangements with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (EUROCONTROL). The development by Frontex of the surveillance project’s communications network will require significant budgetary investment, as the agency plans to maintain the current system ahead of its planned replacement in 2025.[32] This investment is projected despite the agency’s recognition of the economic impact of Covid-19 on member states, and the consequent adjustments to the MFF 2021-27.

      Summary

      Drafted and published as the world responds to an unprecedented pandemic, the “current challenges” referred to in the report appear, on first read, to refer to the budgetary and staffing implications of global shut down. However, the report maintains throughout that the agency’s determination to expand, in terms of powers as well as staffing, will not be stalled despite delays and budgeting adjustments. Indeed, it is implied more than once that the “current challenges” necessitate more than ever that these powers be assumed. The true challenges, from the agency’s point of view, stem from the fact that its current mandate was rushed through negotiations in six months, leading to legal ambiguities that leave it unable to acquire or transport weapons and in a tricky relationship with the EU protocol on privileges and immunities when operating in third countries. Given the violence that so frequently accompanies border control operations in the EU, it will come as a relief to many that Frontex is having difficulties acquiring its own weaponry. However, it is far from reassuring that the introduction of new measures on fundamental rights and accountability are being carried out internally and remain unavailable for public scrutiny.

      Jane Kilpatrick

      Note: this article was updated on 26 May 2020 to include the European Commission’s response to Statewatch’s enquiries.

      It was updated on 1 July with some minor corrections:

      “the Council of the EU has signed or initialled a number of Status Agreements with non-EU states... under which” replaces “the agency has entered into working agreements with Balkan states, under which”
      “The investigatory powers of the FRO are not, however, set out in any detail in the Regulation beyond monitoring the agency’s ’compliance with fundamental rights, including by conducting investigations’” replaces “The investigatory powers of the FRO are not, however, set out in the Regulation”
      “if Frontex is assisting with “voluntary returns” that are not governed by the Returns Directive, it further exposes the haste with which legislation written to deny entry into the EU and facilitate expulsions was drafted” replaces “if Frontex is assisting with “voluntary returns” that are not governed by the Returns Directive, it is acting outside of its legal mandate”

      Endnotes

      [1] Frontex, ‘State of play of the implementation of the EBCG 2.0 Regulation in view of current challenges’, 27 April 2020, contained in Council document 7607/20, LIMITE, 20 April 2020, http://statewatch.org/news/2020/may/eu-council-frontex-ECBG-state-of-play-7607-20.pdf

      [2] Frontex, ‘Programming Document 2018-20’, 10 December 2017, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2019/feb/frontex-programming-document-2018-20.pdf

      [3] Section 1.1, state of play report

      [4] Jane Kilpatrick, ‘Frontex launches “game-changing” recruitment drive for standing corps of border guards’, Statewatch Analysis, March 2020, http://www.statewatch.org/analyses/no-355-frontex-recruitment-standing-corps.pdf

      [5] Section 7.1, state of play report

      [6] EDA, ‘EU SatCom Market’, https://www.eda.europa.eu/what-we-do/activities/activities-search/eu-satcom-market

      [7] Article 55(5)(a), Regulation (EU) 2019/1896 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Border and Coast Guard (Frontex 2019 Regulation), https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/en/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32019R1896

      [8] Pursuant to Annex IX of the EU Staff Regulations, https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:01962R0031-20140501

      [9] Chapter III, state of play report

      [10] Section 2.5, state of play report

      [11] Protocol (No 7), https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=uriserv:OJ.C_.2016.202.01.0001.01.ENG#d1e3363-201-1

      [12] Chapter III, state of play report

      [13] ‘Border externalisation: Agreements on Frontex operations in Serbia and Montenegro heading for parliamentary approval’, Statewatch News, 11 March 2020, http://statewatch.org/news/2020/mar/frontex-status-agreements.htm

      [14] Europol, ‘EU policy cycle – EMPACT’, https://www.europol.europa.eu/empact

      [15] ‘NGOs, EU and international agencies sound the alarm over Frontex’s respect for fundamental rights’, Statewatch News, 5 March 2019, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2019/mar/fx-consultative-forum-rep.htm; ‘Frontex condemned by its own fundamental rights body for failing to live up to obligations’, Statewatch News, 21 May 2018, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2018/may/eu-frontex-fr-rep.htm

      [16] Article 110(6), Article 109, 2019 Regulation

      [17] Article 110, 2019 Regulation

      [18] Article 109, 2019 Regulation

      [19] Section 8, state of play report

      [20] Article 111(1), 2019 Regulation

      [21] Sergio Carrera and Marco Stefan, ‘Complaint Mechanisms in Border Management and Expulsion Operations in Europe: Effective Remedies for Victims of Human Rights Violations?’, CEPS, 2018, https://www.ceps.eu/system/files/Complaint%20Mechanisms_A4.pdf

      [22] Article 110(1), 2019 Regulation

      [23] Section 9, state of play report

      [24] ERRIN, https://returnnetwork.eu

      [25] Section 3.2, state of play report

      [26] Chapter III, state of play report

      [27] Section 3.2, state of play report

      [28] ‘’Roadmap’ for implementing new Frontex Regulation: full steam ahead’, Statewatch News, 25 November 2019, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2019/nov/eu-frontex-roadmap.htm

      [29] State of play report, p. 19

      [30] Matthias Monroy, ‘Drones for Frontex: unmanned migration control at Europe’s borders’, Statewatch Analysis, February 2020, http://www.statewatch.org/analyses/no-354-frontex-drones.pdf

      [31] Section 4, state of play report

      [32] Section 7.2, state of play report
      Next article >

      Mediterranean: As the fiction of a Libyan search and rescue zone begins to crumble, EU states use the coronavirus pandemic to declare themselves unsafe

      https://www.statewatch.org/analyses/2020/eu-guns-guards-and-guidelines-reinforcement-of-frontex-runs-into-problem

      #EBCG_2.0_Regulation #European_Defence_Agency’s_Satellite_Communications (#SatCom) #Communications_and_Information_System (#CIS) #immunité #droits_fondamentaux #droits_humains #Fundamental_Rights_Officer (#FRO) #European_Return_and_Reintegration_Network (#ERRIN) #renvois #expulsions #réintégration #Directive_Retour #FAR (#Frontex_Application_for_Returns) #RECAMAS #EUROSUR #European_Aviation_Safety_Agency (#EASA) #European_Organisation_for_the_Safety_of_Air_Navigation (#EUROCONTROL)

    • Frontex launches “game-changing” recruitment drive for standing corps of border guards

      On 4 January 2020 the Management Board of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) adopted a decision on the profiles of the staff required for the new “standing corps”, which is ultimately supposed to be staffed by 10,000 officials. [1] The decision ushers in a new wave of recruitment for the agency. Applicants will be put through six months of training before deployment, after rigorous medical testing.

      What is the standing corps?

      The European Border and Coast Guard standing corps is the new, and according to Frontex, first ever, EU uniformed service, available “at any time…to support Member States facing challenges at their external borders”.[2] Frontex’s Programming Document for the 2018-2020 period describes the standing corps as the agency’s “biggest game changer”, requiring “an unprecedented scale of staff recruitment”.[3]

      The standing corps will be made up of four categories of Frontex operational staff:

      Frontex statutory staff deployed in operational areas and staff responsible for the functioning of the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) Central Unit[4];
      Long-term staff seconded from member states;
      Staff from member states who can be immediately deployed on short-term secondment to Frontex; and

      A reserve of staff from member states for rapid border interventions.

      These border guards will be “trained by the best and equipped with the latest technology has to offer”.[5] As well as wearing EU uniforms, they will be authorised to carry weapons and will have executive powers: they will be able to verify individuals’ identity and nationality and permit or refuse entry into the EU.

      The decision made this January is limited to the definition of profiles and requirements for the operational staff that are to be recruited. The Management Board (MB) will have to adopt a new decision by March this year to set out the numbers of staff needed per profile, the requirements for individuals holding those positions, and the number of staff needed for the following year based on expected operational needs. This process will be repeated annually.[6] The MB can then further specify how many staff each member state should contribute to these profiles, and establish multi-annual plans for member state contributions and recruitment for Frontex statutory staff. Projections for these contributions are made in Annexes II – IV of the 2019 Regulation, though a September Mission Statement by new European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen urges the recruitment of 10,000 border guards by 2024, indicating that member states might be meeting their contribution commitments much sooner than 2027.[7]

      The standing corps of Frontex staff will have an array of executive powers and responsibilities. As well as being able to verify identity and nationality and refuse or permit entry into the EU, they will be able to consult various EU databases to fulfil operational aims, and may also be authorised by host states to consult national databases. According to the MB Decision, “all members of the Standing Corps are to be able to identify persons in need of international protection and persons in a vulnerable situation, including unaccompanied minors, and refer them to the competent authorities”. Training on international and EU law on fundamental rights and international protection, as well as guidelines on the identification and referral of persons in need of international protection, will be mandatory for all standing corps staff members.

      The size of the standing corps

      The following table, taken from the 2019 Regulation, outlines the ambitions for growth of Frontex’s standing corps. However, as noted, the political ambition is to reach the 10,000 total by 2024.

      –-> voir le tableau sur le site de statewatch!

      Category 2 staff – those on long term secondment from member states – will join Frontex from 2021, according to the 2019 Regulation.[8] It is foreseen that Germany will contribute the most staff, with 61 expected in 2021, increasing year-by-year to 225 by 2027. Other high contributors are France and Italy (170 and 125 by 2027, respectively).

      The lowest contributors will be Iceland (expected to contribute between one and two people a year from 2021 to 2027), Malta, Cyprus and Luxembourg. Liechtenstein is not contributing personnel but will contribute “through proportional financial support”.

      For short-term secondments from member states, projections follow a very similar pattern. Germany will contribute 540 staff in 2021, increasing to 827 in 2027; Italy’s contribution will increase from 300 in 2021 to 458 in 2027; and France’s from 408 in 2021 to 624 in 2027. Most states will be making less than 100 staff available for short-term secondment in 2021.

      What are the profiles?

      The MB Decision outlines 12 profiles to be made available to Frontex, ranging from Border Guard Officer and Crew Member, to Cross Border Crime Detection Officer and Return Specialist. A full list is contained in the Decision.[9] All profiles will be fulfilled by an official of the competent authority of a member state (MS) or Schengen Associated Country (SAC), or by a member of Frontex’s own statutory staff.

      Tasks to be carried out by these officials include:

      border checks and surveillance;
      interviewing, debriefing* and screening arrivals and registering fingerprints;
      supporting the collection, assessment, analysis and distribution of information with EU member and non-member states;
      verifying travel documents;
      escorting individuals being deported on Frontex return operations;
      operating data systems and platforms; and
      offering cultural mediation

      *Debriefing consists of informal interviews with migrants to collect information for risk analyses on irregular migration and other cross-border crime and the profiling of irregular migrants to identify “modus operandi and migration trends used by irregular migrants and facilitators/criminal networks”. Guidelines written by Frontex in 2012 instructed border guards to target vulnerable individuals for “debriefing”, not in order to streamline safeguarding or protection measures, but for intelligence-gathering - “such people are often more willing to talk about their experiences,” said an internal document.[10] It is unknown whether those instructions are still in place.

      Recruitment for the profiles

      Certain profiles are expected to “apply self-safety and security practice”, and to have “the capacity to work under pressure and face emotional events with composure”. Relevant profiles (e.g. crew member) are required to be able to perform search and rescue activities in distress situations at sea borders.

      Frontex published a call for tender on 27 December for the provision of medical services for pre-recruitment examinations, in line with the plan to start recruiting operational staff in early 2020. The documents accompanying the tender reveal additional criteria for officials that will be granted executive powers (Frontex category “A2”) compared to those staff stationed primarily at the agency’s Warsaw headquarters (“A1”). Those criteria come in the form of more stringent medical testing.

      The differences in medical screening for category A1 and A2 staff lie primarily in additional toxicology screening and psychiatric and psychological consultations. [11] The additional psychiatric attention allotted for operational staff “is performed to check the predisposition for people to work in arduous, hazardous conditions, exposed to stress, conflict situations, changing rapidly environment, coping with people being in dramatic, injure or death exposed situations”.[12]

      Both A1 and A2 category provisional recruits will be asked to disclose if they have ever suffered from a sexually transmitted disease or “genital organ disease”, as well as depression, nervous or mental disorders, among a long list of other ailments. As well as disclosing any medication they take, recruits must also state if they are taking oral contraceptives (though there is no question about hormonal contraceptives that are not taken orally). Women are also asked to give the date of their last period on the pre-appointment questionnaire.

      “Never touch yourself with gloves”

      Frontex training materials on forced return operations obtained by Statewatch in 2019 acknowledge the likelihood of psychological stress among staff, among other health risks. (One recommendation contained in the documents is to “never touch yourself with gloves”). Citing “dissonance within the team, long hours with no rest, group dynamic, improvisation and different languages” among factors behind psychological stress, the training materials on medical precautionary measures for deportation escort officers also refer to post-traumatic stress disorder, the lack of an area to retreat to and body clock disruption as exacerbating risks. The document suggests a high likelihood that Frontex return escorts will witness poverty, “agony”, “chaos”, violence, boredom, and will have to deal with vulnerable persons.[13]

      For fundamental rights monitors (officials deployed to monitor fundamental rights compliance during deportations, who can be either Frontex staff or national officials), the training materials obtained by Statewatch focus on the self-control of emotions, rather than emotional care. Strategies recommended include talking to somebody, seeking professional help, and “informing yourself of any other option offered”. The documents suggest that it is an individual’s responsibility to prevent emotional responses to stressful situations having an impact on operations, and to organise their own supervision and professional help. There is no obvious focus on how traumatic responses of Frontex staff could affect those coming into contact with them at an external border or during a deportation. [14]

      The materials obtained by Statewatch also give some indication of the fundamental rights training imparted to those acting as deportation ‘escorts’ and fundamental rights monitors. The intended outcomes for a training session in Athens that took place in March 2019 included “adapt FR [fundamental rights] in a readmission operation (explain it with examples)” and “should be able to describe Non Refoulement principle” (in the document, ‘Session Fundamental rights’ is followed by ‘Session Velcro handcuffs’).[15] The content of the fundamental rights training that will be offered to Frontex’s new recruits is currently unknown.

      Fit for service?

      The agency anticipates that most staff will be recruited from March to June 2020, involving the medical examination of up to 700 applicants in this period. According to Frontex’s website, the agency has already received over 7,000 applications for the 700 new European Border Guard Officer positions.[16] Successful candidates will undergo six months of training before deployment in 2021. Apparently then, the posts are a popular career option, despite the seemingly invasive medical tests (especially for sexually active women). Why, for instance, is it important to Frontex to know about oral hormonal contraception, or about sexually transmitted infections?

      When asked by Statewatch if Frontex provides in-house psychological and emotional support, an agency press officer stated: “When it comes to psychological and emotional support, Frontex is increasing awareness and personal resilience of the officers taking part in our operations through education and training activities.” A ‘Frontex Mental Health Strategy’ from 2018 proposed the establishment of “a network of experts-psychologists” to act as an advisory body, as well as creating “online self-care tools”, a “psychological hot-line”, and a space for peer support with participation of psychologists (according to risk assessment) during operations.[17]

      One year later, Frontex, EASO and Europol jointly produced a brochure for staff deployed on operations, entitled ‘Occupational Health and Safety – Deployment Information’, which offers a series of recommendations to staff, placing the responsibility to “come to the deployment in good mental shape” and “learn how to manage stress and how to deal with anger” more firmly on the individual than the agency.[18] According to this document, officers who need additional support must disclose this by requesting it from their supervisor, while “a helpline or psychologist on-site may be available, depending on location”.

      Frontex anticipates this recruitment drive to be “game changing”. Indeed, the Commission is relying upon it to reach its ambitions for the agency’s independence and efficiency. The inclusion of mandatory training in fundamental rights in the six-month introductory education is obviously a welcome step. Whether lessons learned in a classroom will be the first thing that comes to the minds of officials deployed on border control or deportation operations remains to be seen.

      Unmanaged responses to emotional stress can include burnout, compassion-fatigue and indirect trauma, which can in turn decrease a person’s ability to cope with adverse circumstance, and increase the risk of violence.[19] Therefore, aside from the agency’s responsibility as an employer to safeguard the health of its staff, its approach to internal psychological care will affect not only the border guards themselves, but the people that they routinely come into contact with at borders and during return operations, many of whom themselves will have experienced trauma.

      Jane Kilpatrick

      Endnotes

      [1] Management Board Decision 1/2020 of 4 January 2020 on adopting the profiles to be made available to the European Border and Coast Guard Standing Corps, https://frontex.europa.eu/assets/Key_Documents/MB_Decision/2020/MB_Decision_1_2020_adopting_the_profiles_to_be_made_available_to_the_

      [2] Frontex, ‘Careers’, https://frontex.europa.eu/about-frontex/careers/frontex-border-guard-recruitment

      [3] Frontex, ‘Programming Document 2018-20’, 10 December 2017, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2019/feb/frontex-programming-document-2018-20.pdf

      [4] The ETIAS Central Unit will be responsible for processing the majority of applications for ‘travel authorisations’ received when the European Travel Information and Authorisation System comes into use, in theory in late 2022. Citizens who do not require a visa to travel to the Schengen area will have to apply for authorisation to travel to the Schengen area.

      [5] Frontex, ‘Careers’, https://frontex.europa.eu/about-frontex/careers/frontex-border-guard-recruitment

      [6] Article 54(4), Regulation (EU) 2019/1896 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 November 2019 on the European Border and Coast Guard and repealing Regulations (EU) No 1052/2013 and (EU) 2016/1624, https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/en/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32019R1896

      [7] ‘European Commission 2020 Work Programme: An ambitious roadmap for a Union that strives for more’, 29 January 2020, https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/IP_20_124; “Mission letter” from Ursula von der Leyen to Ylva Johnsson, 10 September 2019, https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/mission-letter-ylva-johansson_en.pdf

      [8] Annex II, 2019 Regulation

      [9] Management Board Decision 1/2020 of 4 January 2020 on adopting the profiles to be made available to the European Border and Coast Guard Standing Corps, https://frontex.europa.eu/assets/Key_Documents/MB_Decision/2020/MB_Decision_1_2020_adopting_the_profiles_to_be_made_available_to_the_

      [10] ‘Press release: EU border agency targeted “isolated or mistreated” individuals for questioning’, Statewatch News, 16 February 2017, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2017/feb/eu-frontex-op-hera-debriefing-pr.htm

      [11] ‘Provision of Medical Services – Pre-Recruitment Examination’, https://etendering.ted.europa.eu/cft/cft-documents.html?cftId=5841

      [12] ‘Provision of medical services – pre-recruitment examination, Terms of Reference - Annex II to invitation to tender no Frontex/OP/1491/2019/KM’, https://etendering.ted.europa.eu/cft/cft-document.html?docId=65398

      [13] Frontex training presentation, ‘Medical precautionary measures for escort officers’, undated, http://statewatch.org/news/2020/mar/eu-frontex-presentation-medical-precautionary-measures-deportation-escor

      [14] Ibid.

      [15] Frontex, document listing course learning outcomes from deportation escorts’ training, http://statewatch.org/news/2020/mar/eu-frontex-deportation-escorts-training-course-learning-outcomes.pdf

      [16] Frontex, ‘Careers’, https://frontex.europa.eu/about-frontex/careers/frontex-border-guard-recruitment

      [17] Frontex, ‘Frontex mental health strategy’, 20 February 2018, https://op.europa.eu/en/publication-detail/-/publication/89c168fe-e14b-11e7-9749-01aa75ed71a1/language-en

      [18] EASO, Europol and Frontex, ‘Occupational health and safety’, 12 August 2019, https://op.europa.eu/en/publication-detail/-/publication/17cc07e0-bd88-11e9-9d01-01aa75ed71a1/language-en/format-PDF/source-103142015

      [19] Trauma Treatment International, ‘A different approach for victims of trauma’, https://www.tt-intl.org/#our-work-section

      https://www.statewatch.org/analyses/2020/frontex-launches-game-changing-recruitment-drive-for-standing-corps-of-b
      #gardes_frontières #staff #corps_des_gardes-frontières

    • Drones for Frontex: unmanned migration control at Europe’s borders (27.02.2020)

      Instead of providing sea rescue capabilities in the Mediterranean, the EU is expanding air surveillance. Refugees are observed with drones developed for the military. In addition to numerous EU states, countries such as Libya could also use the information obtained.

      It is not easy to obtain majorities for legislation in the European Union in the area of migration - unless it is a matter of upgrading the EU’s external borders. While the reform of a common EU asylum system has been on hold for years, the European Commission, Parliament and Council agreed to reshape the border agency Frontex with unusual haste shortly before last year’s parliamentary elections. A new Regulation has been in force since December 2019,[1] under which Frontex intends to build up a “standing corps” of 10,000 uniformed officials by 2027. They can be deployed not just at the EU’s external borders, but in ‘third countries’ as well.

      In this way, Frontex will become a “European border police force” with powers that were previously reserved for the member states alone. The core of the new Regulation includes the procurement of the agency’s own equipment. The Multiannual Financial Framework, in which the EU determines the distribution of its financial resources from 2021 until 2027, has not yet been decided. According to current plans, however, at least €6 billion are reserved for Frontex in the seven-year budget. The intention is for Frontex to spend a large part of the money, over €2 billion, on aircraft, ships and vehicles.[2]

      Frontex seeks company for drone flights

      The upgrade plans include the stationing of large drones in the central and eastern Mediterranean. For this purpose, Frontex is looking for a private partner to operate flights off Malta, Italy or Greece. A corresponding tender ended in December[3] and the selection process is currently underway. The unmanned missions could then begin already in spring. Frontex estimates the total cost of these missions at €50 million. The contract has a term of two years and can be extended twice for one year at a time.

      Frontex wants drones of the so-called MALE (Medium Altitude Long Endurance) class. Their flight duration should be at least 20 hours. The requirements include the ability to fly in all weather conditions and at day and night. It is also planned to operate in airspace where civil aircraft are in service. For surveillance missions, the drones should carry electro-optical cameras, thermal imaging cameras and so-called “daylight spotter” systems that independently detect moving targets and keep them in focus. Other equipment includes systems for locating mobile and satellite telephones. The drones will also be able to receive signals from emergency call transmitters sewn into modern life jackets.

      However, the Frontex drones will not be used primarily for sea rescue operations, but to improve capacities against unwanted migration. This assumption is also confirmed by the German non-governmental organisation Sea-Watch, which has been providing assistance in the central Mediterranean with various ships since 2015. “Frontex is not concerned with saving lives,” says Ruben Neugebauer of Sea-Watch. “While air surveillance is being expanded with aircraft and drones, ships urgently needed for rescue operations have been withdrawn”. Sea-Watch demands that situation pictures of EU drones are also made available to private organisations for sea rescue.

      Aircraft from arms companies

      Frontex has very specific ideas for its own drones, which is why there are only a few suppliers worldwide that can be called into question. The Israel Aerospace Industries Heron 1, which Frontex tested for several months on the Greek island of Crete[4] and which is also flown by the German Bundeswehr, is one of them. As set out by Frontex in its invitation to tender, the Heron 1, with a payload of around 250 kilograms, can carry all the surveillance equipment that the agency intends to deploy over the Mediterranean. Also amongst those likely to be interested in the Frontex contract is the US company General Atomics, which has been building drones of the Predator series for 20 years. Recently, it presented a new Predator model in Greece under the name SeaGuardian, for maritime observation.[5] It is equipped with a maritime surveillance radar and a system for receiving position data from larger ships, thus fulfilling one of Frontex’s essential requirements.

      General Atomics may have a competitive advantage, as its Predator drones have several years’ operational experience in the Mediterranean. In addition to Frontex, the European Union has been active in the central Mediterranean with EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia. In March 2019, Italy’s then-interior minister Matteo Salvini pushed through the decision to operate the EU mission from the air alone. Since then, two unarmed Predator drones operated by the Italian military have been flying for EUNAVFOR MED for 60 hours per month. Officially, the drones are to observe from the air whether the training of the Libyan coast guard has been successful and whether these navy personnel use their knowledge accordingly. Presumably, however, the Predators are primarily pursuing the mission’s goal to “combat human smuggling” by spying on the Libyan coast. It is likely that the new Operation EU Active Surveillance, which will use military assets from EU member states to try to enforce the UN arms embargo placed on Libya,[6] will continue to patrol with Italian drones off the coast in North Africa.

      Three EU maritime surveillance agencies

      In addition to Frontex, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) and the European Fisheries Control Agency (EFCA) are also investing in maritime surveillance using drones. Together, the three agencies coordinate some 300 civil and military authorities in EU member states.[7] Their tasks include border, fisheries and customs control, law enforcement and environmental protection.

      In 2017, Frontex and EMSA signed an agreement to benefit from joint reconnaissance capabilities, with EFCA also involved.[8] At the time, EMSA conducted tests with drones of various sizes, but now the drones’ flights are part of its regular services. The offer is not only open to EU Member States, as Iceland was the first to take advantage of it. Since summer 2019, a long-range Hermes 900 drone built by the Israeli company Elbit Systems has been flying from Iceland’s Egilsstaðir airport. The flights are intended to cover more than half of the island state’s exclusive economic zone and to detect “suspicious activities and potential hazards”.[9]

      The Hermes 900 was also developed for the military; the Israeli army first deployed it in the Gaza Strip in 2014. The Times of Israel puts the cost of the operating contract with EMSA at €59 million,[10] with a term of two years, which can be extended for another two years. The agency did not conclude the contract directly with the Israeli arms company, but through the Portuguese firm CeiiA. The contract covers the stationing, control and mission control of the drones.

      New interested parties for drone flights

      At the request of the German MEP Özlem Demirel (from the party Die Linke), the European Commission has published a list of countries that also want to use EMSA drones.[11] According to this list, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Portugal and also Greece have requested unmanned flights for pollution monitoring this year, while Bulgaria and Spain want to use them for general maritime surveillance. Until Frontex has its own drones, EMSA is flying its drones for the border agency on Crete. As in Iceland, this is the long-range drone Hermes 900, but according to Greek media reports it crashed on 8 January during take-off.[12] Possible causes are a malfunction of the propulsion system or human error. The aircraft is said to have been considerably damaged.

      Authorities from France and Great Britain have also ordered unmanned maritime surveillance from EMSA. Nothing is yet known about the exact intended location, but it is presumably the English Channel. There, the British coast guard is already observing border traffic with larger drones built by the Tekever arms company from Portugal.[13] The government in London wants to prevent migrants from crossing the Channel. The drones take off from the airport in the small town of Lydd and monitor the approximately 50-kilometre-long and 30-kilometre-wide Strait of Dover. Great Britain has also delivered several quadcopters to France to try to detect potential migrants in French territorial waters. According to the prefecture of Pas-de-Calais, eight gendarmes have been trained to control the small drones[14].

      Information to non-EU countries

      The images taken by EMSA drones are evaluated by the competent national coastguards. A livestream also sends them to Frontex headquarters in Warsaw.[15] There they are fed into the EUROSUR border surveillance system. This is operated by Frontex and networks the surveillance installations of all EU member states that have an external border. The data from EUROSUR and the national border control centres form the ‘Common Pre-frontier Intelligence Picture’,[16] referring to the area of interest of Frontex, which extends far into the African continent. Surveillance data is used to detect and prevent migration movements at an early stage.

      Once the providing company has been selected, the new Frontex drones are also to fly for EUROSUR. According to the invitation to tender, they are to operate in the eastern and central Mediterranean within a radius of up to 250 nautical miles (463 kilometres). This would enable them to carry out reconnaissance in the “pre-frontier” area off Tunisia, Libya and Egypt. Within the framework of EUROSUR, Frontex shares the recorded data with other European users via a ‘Remote Information Portal’, as the call for tender explains. The border agency has long been able to cooperate with third countries and the information collected can therefore also be made available to authorities in North Africa. However, in order to share general information on surveillance of the Mediterranean Sea with a non-EU state, Frontex must first conclude a working agreement with the corresponding government.[17]

      It is already possible, however, to provide countries such as Libya with the coordinates of refugee boats. For example, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea stipulates that the nearest Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) must be informed of actual or suspected emergencies. With EU funding, Italy has been building such a centre in Tripoli for the last two years.[18] It is operated by the military coast guard, but so far has no significant equipment of its own.

      The EU military mission “EUNAVFOR MED” was cooperating more extensively with the Libyan coast guard. For communication with European naval authorities, Libya is the first third country to be connected to European surveillance systems via the “Seahorse Mediterranean” network[19]. Information handed over to the Libyan authorities might also include information that was collected with the Italian military ‘Predator’ drones.

      Reconnaissance generated with unmanned aerial surveillance is also given to the MRCC in Turkey. This was seen in a pilot project last summer, when the border agency tested an unmanned aerostat with the Greek coast guard off the island of Samos.[20] Attached to a 1,000 metre-long cable, the airship was used in the Frontex operation ‘Poseidon’ in the eastern Mediterranean. The 35-meter-long zeppelin comes from the French manufacturer A-NSE.[21] The company specializes in civil and military aerial observation. According to the Greek Marine Ministry, the equipment included a radar, a thermal imaging camera and an Automatic Identification System (AIS) for the tracking of larger ships. The recorded videos were received and evaluated by a situation centre supplied by the Portuguese National Guard. If a detected refugee boat was still in Turkish territorial waters, the Greek coast guard informed the Turkish authorities. This pilot project in the Aegean Sea was the first use of an airship by Frontex. The participants deployed comparatively large numbers of personnel for the short mission. Pictures taken by the Greek coastguard show more than 40 people.

      Drones enable ‘pull-backs’

      Human rights organisations accuse EUNAVFOR MED and Frontex of passing on information to neighbouring countries leading to rejections (so-called ‘push-backs’) in violation of international law. People must not be returned to states where they are at risk of torture or other serious human rights violations. Frontex does not itself return refugees in distress who were discovered at sea via aerial surveillance, but leaves the task to the Libyan or Turkish authorities. Regarding Libya, the Agency since 2017 provided notice of at least 42 vessels in distress to Libyan authorities.[22]

      Private rescue organisations therefore speak of so-called ‘pull-backs’, but these are also prohibited, as the Israeli human rights lawyer Omer Shatz argues: “Communicating the location of civilians fleeing war to a consortium of militias and instructing them to intercept and forcibly transfer them back to the place they fled from, trigger both state responsibility of all EU members and individual criminal liability of hundreds involved.” Together with his colleague Juan Branco, Shatz is suing those responsible for the European Union and its agencies before the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Soon they intend to publish individual cases and the names of the people accused.

      Matthias Monroy

      An earlier version of this article first appeared in the German edition of Le Monde Diplomatique: ‘Drohnen für Frontex Statt sich auf die Rettung von Bootsflüchtlingen im Mittelmeer zu konzentrieren, baut die EU die Luftüberwachung’.

      Note: this article was corrected on 6 March to clarify a point regarding cooperation between Frontex and non-EU states.

      Endnotes

      [1] Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Border and Coast Guard, https://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/PE-33-2019-INIT/en/pdf

      [2] European Commission, ‘A strengthened and fully equipped European Border and Coast Guard’, 12 September 2018, https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/soteu2018-factsheet-coast-guard_en.pdf

      [3] ‘Poland-Warsaw: Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) for Medium Altitude Long Endurance Maritime Aerial Surveillance’, https://ted.europa.eu/udl?uri=TED:NOTICE:490010-2019:TEXT:EN:HTML&tabId=1

      [4] IAI, ‘IAI AND AIRBUS MARITIME HERON UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEM (UAS) SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETED 200 FLIGHT HOURS IN CIVILIAN EUROPEAN AIRSPACE FOR FRONTEX’, 24 October 2018, https://www.iai.co.il/iai-and-airbus-maritime-heron-unmanned-aerial-system-uas-successfully-complet

      [5] ‘ European Maritime Flight Demonstrations’, General Atomics, http://www.ga-asi.com/european-maritime-demo

      [6] ‘EU agrees to deploy warships to enforce Libya arms embargo’, The Guardian, 17 February 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/17/eu-agrees-deploy-warships-enforce-libya-arms-embargo

      [7] EMSA, ‘Heads of EMSA and Frontex meet to discuss cooperation on European coast guard functions’, 3 April 2019, http://www.emsa.europa.eu/news-a-press-centre/external-news/item/3499-heads-of-emsa-and-frontex-meet-to-discuss-cooperation-on-european-c

      [8] Frontex, ‘Frontex, EMSA and EFCA strengthen cooperation on coast guard functions’, 23 March 2017, https://frontex.europa.eu/media-centre/news-release/frontex-emsa-and-efca-strengthen-cooperation-on-coast-guard-functions

      [9] Elbit Systems, ‘Elbit Systems Commenced the Operation of the Maritime UAS Patrol Service to European Union Countries’, 18 June 2019, https://elbitsystems.com/pr-new/elbit-systems-commenced-the-operation-of-the-maritime-uas-patrol-servi

      [10] ‘Elbit wins drone contract for up to $68m to help monitor Europe coast’, The Times of Israel, 1 November 2018, https://www.timesofisrael.com/elbit-wins-drone-contract-for-up-to-68m-to-help-monitor-europe-coast

      [11] ‘Answer given by Ms Bulc on behalf of the European Commission’, https://netzpolitik.org/wp-upload/2019/12/E-2946_191_Finalised_reply_Annex1_EN_V1.pdf

      [12] ‘Το drone της FRONTEX έπεσε, οι μετανάστες έρχονται’, Proto Thema, 27 January 2020, https://www.protothema.gr/greece/article/968869/to-drone-tis-frontex-epese-oi-metanastes-erhodai

      [13] Morgan Meaker, ‘Here’s proof the UK is using drones to patrol the English Channel’, Wired, 10 January 2020, https://www.wired.co.uk/article/uk-drones-migrants-english-channel

      [14] ‘Littoral: Les drones pour lutter contre les traversées de migrants sont opérationnels’, La Voix du Nord, 26 March 2019, https://www.lavoixdunord.fr/557951/article/2019-03-26/les-drones-pour-lutter-contre-les-traversees-de-migrants-sont-operation

      [15] ‘Frontex report on the functioning of Eurosur – Part I’, Council document 6215/18, 15 February 2018, http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-6215-2018-INIT/en/pdf

      [16] European Commission, ‘Eurosur’, https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/borders-and-visas/border-crossing/eurosur_en

      [17] Legal reforms have also given Frontex the power to operate on the territory of non-EU states, subject to the conclusion of a status agreement between the EU and the country in question. The 2016 Frontex Regulation allowed such cooperation with states that share a border with the EU; the 2019 Frontex Regulation extends this to any non-EU state.

      [18] ‘Helping the Libyan Coast Guard to establish a Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre’, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-8-2018-000547_EN.html

      [19] Matthias Monroy, ‘EU funds the sacking of rescue ships in the Mediterranean’, 7 July 2018, https://digit.site36.net/2018/07/03/eu-funds-the-sacking-of-rescue-ships-in-the-mediterranean

      [20] Frontex, ‘Frontex begins testing use of aerostat for border surveillance’, 31 July 2019, https://frontex.europa.eu/media-centre/news-release/frontex-begins-testing-use-of-aerostat-for-border-surveillance-ur33N8

      [21] ‘Answer given by Ms Johansson on behalf of the European Commission’, 7 January 2020, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-9-2019-002529-ASW_EN.html

      [22] ‘Answer given by Vice-President Borrell on behalf of the European Commission’, 8 January 2020, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-9-2019-002654-ASW_EN.html

      https://www.statewatch.org/analyses/2020/drones-for-frontex-unmanned-migration-control-at-europe-s-borders

      #drones

    • Monitoring “secondary movements” and “hotspots”: Frontex is now an internal surveillance agency (16.12.2019)

      The EU’s border agency, Frontex, now has powers to gather data on “secondary movements” and the “hotspots” within the EU. The intention is to ensure “situational awareness” and produce risk analyses on the migratory situation within the EU, in order to inform possible operational action by national authorities. This brings with it increased risks for the fundamental rights of both non-EU nationals and ethnic minority EU citizens.

      The establishment of a new ’standing corps’ of 10,000 border guards to be commanded by EU border agency Frontex has generated significant public and press attention in recent months. However, the new rules governing Frontex[1] include a number of other significant developments - including a mandate for the surveillance of migratory movements and migration “hotspots” within the EU.

      Previously, the agency’s surveillance role has been restricted to the external borders and the “pre-frontier area” – for example, the high seas or “selected third-country ports.”[2] New legal provisions mean it will now be able to gather data on the movement of people within the EU. While this is only supposed to deal with “trends, volumes and routes,” rather than personal data, it is intended to inform operational activity within the EU.

      This may mean an increase in operations against ‘unauthorised’ migrants, bringing with it risks for fundamental rights such as the possibility of racial profiling, detention, violence and the denial of access to asylum procedures. At the same time, in a context where internal borders have been reintroduced by numerous Schengen states over the last five years due to increased migration, it may be that he agency’s new role contributes to a further prolongation of internal border controls.

      From external to internal surveillance

      Frontex was initially established with the primary goals of assisting in the surveillance and control of the external borders of the EU. Over the years it has obtained increasing powers to conduct surveillance of those borders in order to identify potential ’threats’.

      The European Border Surveillance System (EUROSUR) has a key role in this task, taking data from a variety of sources, including satellites, sensors, drones, ships, vehicles and other means operated both by national authorities and the agency itself. EUROSUR was formally established by legislation approved in 2013, although the system was developed and in use long before it was subject to a legal framework.[3]

      The new Frontex Regulation incorporates and updates the provisions of the 2013 EUROSUR Regulation. It maintains existing requirements for the agency to establish a “situational picture” of the EU’s external borders and the “pre-frontier area” – for example, the high seas or the ports of non-EU states – which is then distributed to the EU’s member states in order to inform operational activities.[4]

      The new rules also provide a mandate for reporting on “unauthorised secondary movements” and goings-on in the “hotspots”. The Commission’s proposal for the new Frontex Regulation was not accompanied by an impact assessment, which would have set out the reasoning and justifications for these new powers. The proposal merely pointed out that the new rules would “evolve” the scope of EUROSUR, to make it possible to “prevent secondary movements”.[5] As the European Data Protection Supervisor remarked, the lack of an impact assessment made it impossible: “to fully assess and verify its attended benefits and impact, notably on fundamental rights and freedoms, including the right to privacy and to the protection of personal data.”[6]

      The term “secondary movements” is not defined in the Regulation, but is generally used to refer to journeys between EU member states undertaken without permission, in particular by undocumented migrants and applicants for internal protection. Regarding the “hotspots” – established and operated by EU and national authorities in Italy and Greece – the Regulation provides a definition,[7] but little clarity on precisely what information will be gathered.

      Legal provisions

      A quick glance at Section 3 of the new Regulation, dealing with EUROSUR, gives little indication that the system will now be used for internal surveillance. The formal scope of EUROSUR is concerned with the external borders and border crossing points:

      “EUROSUR shall be used for border checks at authorised border crossing points and for external land, sea and air border surveillance, including the monitoring, detection, identification, tracking, prevention and interception of unauthorised border crossings for the purpose of detecting, preventing and combating illegal immigration and cross-border crime and contributing to ensuring the protection and saving the lives of migrants.”

      However, the subsequent section of the Regulation (on ‘situational awareness’) makes clear the agency’s new internal role. Article 24 sets out the components of the “situational pictures” that will be visible in EUROSUR. There are three types – national situational pictures, the European situational picture and specific situational pictures. All of these should consist of an events layer, an operational layer and an analysis layer. The first of these layers should contain (emphasis added in all quotes):

      “…events and incidents related to unauthorised border crossings and cross-border crime and, where available, information on unauthorised secondary movements, for the purpose of understanding migratory trends, volume and routes.”

      Article 26, dealing with the European situational picture, states:

      “The Agency shall establish and maintain a European situational picture in order to provide the national coordination centres and the Commission with effective, accurate and timely information and analysis, covering the external borders, the pre-frontier area and unauthorised secondary movements.”

      The events layer of that picture should include “information relating to… incidents in the operational area of a joint operation or rapid intervention coordinated by the Agency, or in a hotspot.”[8] In a similar vein:

      “The operational layer of the European situational picture shall contain information on the joint operations and rapid interventions coordinated by the Agency and on hotspots, and shall include the mission statements, locations, status, duration, information on the Member States and other actors involved, daily and weekly situational reports, statistical data and information packages for the media.”[9]

      Article 28, dealing with ‘EUROSUR Fusion Services’, says that Frontex will provide national authorities with information on the external borders and pre-frontier area that may be derived from, amongst other things, the monitoring of “migratory flows towards and within the Union in terms of trends, volume and routes.”

      Sources of data

      The “situational pictures” compiled by Frontex and distributed via EUROSUR are made up of data gathered from a host of different sources. For the national situational picture, these are:

      national border surveillance systems;
      stationary and mobile sensors operated by national border agencies;
      border surveillance patrols and “other monitoring missions”;
      local, regional and other coordination centres;
      other national authorities and systems, such as immigration liaison officers, operational centres and contact points;
      border checks;
      Frontex;
      other member states’ national coordination centres;
      third countries’ authorities;
      ship reporting systems;
      other relevant European and international organisations; and
      other sources.[10]

      For the European situational picture, the sources of data are:

      national coordination centres;
      national situational pictures;
      immigration liaison officers;
      Frontex, including reports form its liaison officers;
      Union delegations and EU Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) missions;
      other relevant Union bodies, offices and agencies and international organisations; and
      third countries’ authorities.[11]

      The EUROSUR handbook – which will presumably be redrafted to take into account the new legislation – provides more detail about what each of these categories may include.[12]

      Exactly how this melange of different data will be used to report on secondary movements is currently unknown. However, in accordance with Article 24 of the new Regulation:

      “The Commission shall adopt an implementing act laying down the details of the information layers of the situational pictures and the rules for the establishment of specific situational pictures. The implementing act shall specify the type of information to be provided, the entities responsible for collecting, processing, archiving and transmitting specific information, the maximum time limits for reporting, the data security and data protection rules and related quality control mechanisms.” [13]

      This implementing act will specify precisely how EUROSUR will report on “secondary movements”.[14] According to a ‘roadmap’ setting out plans for the implementation of the new Regulation, this implementing act should have been drawn up in the last quarter of 2020 by a newly-established European Border and Coast Guard Committee sitting within the Commission. However, that Committee does not yet appear to have held any meetings.[15]

      Operational activities at the internal borders

      Boosting Frontex’s operational role is one of the major purposes of the new Regulation, although it makes clear that the internal surveillance role “should not lead to operational activities of the Agency at the internal borders of the Member States.” Rather, internal surveillance should “contribute to the monitoring by the Agency of migratory flows towards and within the Union for the purpose of risk analysis and situational awareness.” The purpose is to inform operational activity by national authorities.

      In recent years Schengen member states have reintroduced border controls for significant periods in the name of ensuring internal security and combating irregular migration. An article in Deutsche Welle recently highlighted:

      “When increasing numbers of refugees started arriving in the European Union in 2015, Austria, Germany, Slovenia and Hungary quickly reintroduced controls, citing a “continuous big influx of persons seeking international protection.” This was the first time that migration had been mentioned as a reason for reintroducing border controls.

      Soon after, six Schengen members reintroduced controls for extended periods. Austria, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway cited migration as a reason. France, as the sixth country, first introduced border checks after the November 2015 attacks in Paris, citing terrorist threats. Now, four years later, all six countries still have controls in place. On November 12, they are scheduled to extend them for another six months.”[16]

      These long-term extensions of internal border controls are illegal (the upper limit is supposed to be two years; discussions on changes to the rules governing the reintroduction of internal border controls in the Schengen area are ongoing).[17] A European Parliament resolution from May 2018 stated that “many of the prolongations are not in line with the existing rules as to their extensions, necessity or proportionality and are therefore unlawful.”[18] Yves Pascou, a researcher for the European Policy Centre, told Deutsche Welle that: “"We are in an entirely political situation now, not a legal one, and not one grounded in facts.”

      A European Parliament study published in 2016 highlighted that:

      “there has been a noticeable lack of detail and evidence given by the concerned EU Member States [those which reintroduced internal border controls]. For example, there have been no statistics on the numbers of people crossing borders and seeking asylum, or assessment of the extent to which reintroducing border checks complies with the principles of proportionality and necessity.”[19]

      One purpose of Frontex’s new internal surveillance powers is to provide such evidence (albeit in the ideologically-skewed form of ‘risk analysis’) on the situation within the EU. Whether the information provided will be of interest to national authorities is another question. Nevertheless, it would be a significant irony if the provision of that information were to contribute to the further maintenance of internal borders in the Schengen area.

      At the same time, there is a more pressing concern related to these new powers. Many discussions on the reintroduction of internal borders revolve around the fact that it is contrary to the idea, spirit (and in these cases, the law) of the Schengen area. What appears to have been totally overlooked is the effect the reintroduction of internal borders may have on non-EU nationals or ethnic minority citizens of the EU. One does not have to cross an internal Schengen frontier too many times to notice patterns in the appearance of the people who are hauled off trains and buses by border guards, but personal anecdotes are not the same thing as empirical investigation. If Frontex’s new powers are intended to inform operational activity by the member states at the internal borders of the EU, then the potential effects on fundamental rights must be taken into consideration and should be the subject of investigation by journalists, officials, politicians and researchers.

      Chris Jones

      Endnotes

      [1] The new Regulation was published in the Official Journal of the EU in mid-November: Regulation (EU) 2019/1896 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 November 2019 on the European Border and Coast Guard and repealing Regulations (EU) No 1052/2013 and (EU) 2016/1624, https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/en/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32019R1896

      [2] Article 12, ‘Common application of surveillance tools’, Regulation (EU) No 1052/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October 2013 establishing the European Border Surveillance System (Eurosur), https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32013R1052

      [3] According to Frontex, the Eurosur Network first came into use in December 2011 and in March 2012 was first used to “exchange operational information”. The Regulation governing the system came into force in October 2013 (see footnote 2). See: Charles Heller and Chris Jones, ‘Eurosur: saving lives or reinforcing deadly borders?’, Statewatch Journal, vol. 23 no. 3/4, February 2014, http://database.statewatch.org/article.asp?aid=33156

      [4] Recital 34, 2019 Regulation: “EUROSUR should provide an exhaustive situational picture not only at the external borders but also within the Schengen area and in the pre-frontier area. It should cover land, sea and air border surveillance and border checks.”

      [5] European Commission, ‘Proposal for a Regulation on the European Border and Coast Guard and repealing Council Joint Action no 98/700/JHA, Regulation (EU) no 1052/2013 and Regulation (EU) no 2016/1624’, COM(2018) 631 final, 12 September 2018, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2018/sep/eu-com-frontex-proposal-regulation-com-18-631.pdf

      [6] EDPS, ‘Formal comments on the Proposal for a Regulation on the European Border and Coast Guard’, 30 November 2018, p. p.2, https://edps.europa.eu/sites/edp/files/publication/18-11-30_comments_proposal_regulation_european_border_coast_guard_en.pdf

      [7] Article 2(23): “‘hotspot area’ means an area created at the request of the host Member State in which the host Member State, the Commission, relevant Union agencies and participating Member States cooperate, with the aim of managing an existing or potential disproportionate migratory challenge characterised by a significant increase in the number of migrants arriving at the external borders”

      [8] Article 26(3)(c), 2019 Regulation

      [9] Article 26(4), 2019 Regulation

      [10] Article 25, 2019 Regulation

      [11] Article 26, 2019 Regulation

      [12] European Commission, ‘Commission Recommendation adopting the Practical Handbook for implementing and managing the European Border Surveillance System (EUROSUR)’, C(2015) 9206 final, 15 December 2015, https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/sites/homeaffairs/files/what-we-do/policies/securing-eu-borders/legal-documents/docs/eurosur_handbook_annex_en.pdf

      [13] Article 24(3), 2019 Regulation

      [14] ‘’Roadmap’ for implementing new Frontex Regulation: full steam ahead’, Statewatch News, 25 November 2019, http://www.statewatch.org/news/2019/nov/eu-frontex-roadmap.htm

      [15] Documents related to meetings of committees operating under the auspices of the European Commission can be found in the Comitology Register: https://ec.europa.eu/transparency/regcomitology/index.cfm?do=Search.Search&NewSearch=1

      [16] Kira Schacht, ‘Border checks in EU countries challenge Schengen Agreement’, DW, 12 November 2019, https://www.dw.com/en/border-checks-in-eu-countries-challenge-schengen-agreement/a-51033603

      [17] European Parliament, ‘Temporary reintroduction of border control at internal borders’, https://oeil.secure.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/ficheprocedure.do?reference=2017/0245(COD)&l=en

      [18] ‘Report on the annual report on the functioning of the Schengen area’, 3 May 2018, para.9, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/A-8-2018-0160_EN.html

      [19] Elpseth Guild et al, ‘Internal border controls in the Schengen area: is Schengen crisis-proof?’, European Parliament, June 2016, p.9, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/STUD/2016/571356/IPOL_STU(2016)571356_EN.pdf

      https://www.statewatch.org/analyses/2019/monitoring-secondary-movements-and-hotspots-frontex-is-now-an-internal-s

      #mouvements_secondaires #hotspot #hotspots

  • #Pandémie : Le déchainement ! Vaccination en Marche (...forcée) Stratégie du choc
    Grâce aux travail de l’#OMS de la #banque_mondiale et de #bill_gates, tout passe et devient crédible dans la bouche du pire personnage de l’histoire.
    On se croirait dans le bunker qui abrite la cellule de crise de l’Élysée. Le narratif de ce qu’on vit réellement actuellement.
    Je veux qu’ils se jettent sur le vaccin, comme un passager du Lolita Express lorsqu’il voit passer un enfant.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=5&v=4kfCJjDBGAA

    #propagande #enfumage #manipulation #histoire #médias #vaccins #internet #réseaux_sociaux #médias #merdias #masques #muselière #Didier_Raoult #Lancet #argent #santé #gros_sous #capitalisme #big_pharma #laboratoires_pharmacetiques #confinement #pandémies #pandémie #grippe #covid-19 #coronavirus #panique #big_pharma #épidémie #EnMarche

    • Le Bunker de la dernière rafale

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFbyNaAAfZw

      Le Bunker de la dernière rafale est un court métrage français réalisé par Marc Caro et Jean-Pierre Jeunet, sorti en 1981.

      Synopsis : Une équipe de militaires dérangés est confinée dans un bunker. Lorsque l’un d’eux découvre un compteur qui défile à rebours, tous sont affolés. Que se passera-t-il à la fin du décompte ? C’est dans cette ambiance lourde de tension qu’ils sombreront tous, peu à peu, dans la plus profonde des folies.Métaphore de la peur inconsidérée qu’a l’homme de l’inconnu, le très peu de paroles de ce court-métrage, lui confère une certaine universalité.

      Fiche technique :
      Réalisation : Marc Caro & Jean-Pierre Jeunet
      Scénario : Gilles Adrien, Marc Caro & Jean-Pierre Jeunet
      Production : Zootrope
      Son : Marc Caro
      Photographie : Marc Caro, Jean-Pierre Jeunet & Spot
      Montage : Marc Caro & Jean-Pierre Jeunet
      Pays d’origine : France
      Format : noir et blanc - 1,66:1 - mono - 35 mm
      Genre : court métrage, science-fiction
      Durée : 26 minutes
      Date de sortie : 1981 (France)
      Distribution : Jean-Marie de Busscher - Marc Caro - Patrice Succi - Gilles Adrien - Spot - Vincent Ferniot - Thierry Fournier - Zorin - Eric Caro - Jean-Pierre Jeunet - Bruno Richard - Hervé di Rosa

      #Cinéma #court_métrage

  • Why the tech giants may suffer lasting pain from their Hill lashing
    https://www.politico.com/news/2020/07/29/big-tech-ceo-hearing-takeaways-387677

    Lawmakers investigating Facebook, Amazon, Google and Apple made it clear that their allegations of antitrust abuses come with a lengthy paper trail. Wednesday’s much-anticipated antitrust hearing subjected four of the tech industry’s most powerful CEOs to hours of aggressive questioning by Republicans and Democrats alike. But it also may have revealed something far more lasting : A Congress that has largely soured on Silicon Valley is beginning to figure out how to hold it to account, (...)

    #Apple #Google #Amazon #Facebook #algorithme #Android #iPhone #smartphone #manipulation #domination #élections #bénéfices #biais #BigData #marketing #profiling #publicité (...)

    ##publicité ##FTC

  • Peut-on encore cultiver son jardin secret ?
    https://www.franceinter.fr/emissions/le-debat-de-midi/le-debat-de-midi-30-juillet-2020

    Difficile de le conserver à une époque où même les photos les plus intimes se retrouvent étalées sur les réseaux, qui pour le coup n’ont de sociaux que le nom. Peut-on encore cultiver son jardin secret ? Nos invités de ce jeudi 30 Juillet 2020 : Quentin Lafay, écrivain, auteur de L’intrusion (Gallimard, février 2020) Olivier Tesquet, journaliste à Télérama, co-auteur avec Guillaume Ledit de, Dans la tête de Julian Assange (éditions Actes Sud, février 2020), et auteur de, À la Trace (éditions Premier (...)

    #données #BigData #GAFAM #marketing #profiling #publicité #surveillance

    ##publicité

  • La pieuvre Microsoft et nos données de santé
    https://lundi.am/pieuvre-microsoft

    Sous couvert de lutte contre l’épidémie et d’état d’urgence sanitaire, le gouvernement a donné le coup d’envoi à son projet de méga plateforme de données de santé hébergée chez Microsoft. Petite plongée dans l’intelligence artificielle en médecine avec le collectif inter-hop qui depuis le début du projet milite contre cette plateforme géante et pour une utilisation autonome des données de santé à échelle humaine. Source : Lundi matin

  • Facebook takes the EU to court over privacy spat
    https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53558947

    Facebook has pushed back against a European Union investigation into its practices, taking it to court over privacy concerns. Two investigations are being carried out into Facebook to find out if it breaches competition laws. To gather information, the European Commission has demanded internal documents from Facebook that include 2,500 specific key phrases. Facebook says that means handing over unrelated but highly sensitive data. The European Commission says it will defend the case in (...)

    #Facebook #famille #données #BigData #santé #travail

    ##santé

  • There will be more than a BILLION CCTV cameras globally by the end of next year, researchers claim
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8566179/There-BILLION-CCTV-cameras-globally-end-year-researchers-claim.html

    18 of the top 20 most surveilled cities in the league table are found in China London came third with the capital having one camera for every 15 people Technology website Comparitech say there could be a billion globally next year The world will be watched by an astonishing one billion CCTV cameras by the end of next year, researchers claim. While 18 of the top 20 most surveilled cities are in China, known for its state crackdowns, London comes a surprising third in the league table. The (...)

    #CCTV #vidéo-surveillance #surveillance #BigBrotherWatch

  • Une audition inédite pour les PDG de Google, Amazon, Facebook et Apple
    https://www.lemonde.fr/economie/article/2020/07/28/une-audition-inedite-pour-les-pdg-de-google-amazon-facebook-et-apple_6047512

    Les patrons des GAFA passent un grand oral en visioconférence, mercredi, devant des parlementaires américains. Ils devront répondre à des questions portant sur d’éventuels abus de position dominante. L’événement est sans précédent. A plusieurs égards. Jamais les quatre PDG des « GAFA » – l’acronyme désignant Google, Amazon, Facebook et Apple – n’avaient été réunis en même temps pour être interrogés par des élus. Jamais non plus Jeff Bezos, le fondateur d’Amazon, n’avait fait face à des parlementaires, comme les (...)

    #Apple #Google #TikTok #Amazon #Facebook #Instagram #WhatsApp #Android #iPhone #smartphone #domination #BigData #GAFAM (...)

    ##publicité

  • COVID-19 : Sommes-nous à nouveau induits en erreur par les entreprises pharmaceutiques ?
    https://www.investigaction.net/fr/covid-19-sommes-nous-a-nouveau-induits-en-erreur-par-big-pharma

    En mars 2020, l’Organisation mondiale de la Santé (OMS) a déclaré que l’épidémie de COVID-19 était une pandémie. Ce n’est pas une première foi. Dans un passé récent, l’OMS avait annoncé en juin 2009 que le H1N1 – connu aussi sous le nom de grippe porcine – était aussi une pandémie. Entre ces deux pandémies, de nombreux faits ont été négligés et il convient d’y revenir.


     
    Après l’épidémie de H5N1 (la grippe aviaire) et au début de celle de H1N1, les entreprises pharmaceutiques transnationales se sont lancées dans une compétition féroce pour fournir des traitements en l’absence de vaccins.

    Entre 2005 et 2009, l’antiviral oseltamivir, commercialisé par Roche sous le nom de Tamiflu, a réussi à être reconnu comme le médicament de choix pour la prévention et le traitement par plusieurs organismes internationaux tels que l’OMS, le Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) des États-Unis d’Amérique et l’Agence européenne des médicaments.

    A cette époque, afin de préparer une “éventuelle opération de confinement”, l’OMS a reçu de Roche un don de trois millions de traitements d’oseltamivir destinés à constituer une réserve, selon le rapport du Comité d’examen du fonctionnement du Règlement sanitaire international (2005) en relation avec la pandémie de 2009 (H1N1) 2009, publié par l’OMS.

    L’OMS a encouragé les pays à introduire des plans de confinement rapide dans leurs mécanismes nationaux de préparation aux pandémies de grippe, selon le même rapport. En outre, l’OMS a élaboré dans le même but un “protocole de confinement rapide” reposant essentiellement sur l’oseltamivir.

    Comme il fallait s’y attendre, sous l’effet d’une panique globale de grande ampleur, Roche a reçu des commandes venues de pays du monde entier, notamment de l’Égypte. Des recherches ultérieures et la littérature révèlent que les décisions d’achat reposaient sur des essais cliniques financés par Roche, dont les résultats, selon les experts, étaient limités et incomplets, surtout en ce qui concerne l’efficacité et les effets secondaires du Tamiflu, dont certains se sont par la suite révélés dangereux.

    En outre, certaines informations fausses laissaient prévoir une flambée incontrôlable de l’infection. Une étude Cochrane a révélé que les bénéfices de l’oseltamivir étaient faibles en ce qui concerne la diminution des symptômes, car ce médicament ne réduisait leur durée que d’une demi-journée tout au plus.

    Les auteurs de cette étude, qui se sont arrangés pour obtenir les rapports complets des recherches cliniques originales, ont également pu se faire une idée plus claire des effets secondaires de l’oseltamivir. A la fin, l’étude Cochrane a posé la question de savoir si la constitution de réserves d’oseltamivir était justifiée.

    On peut voir ce qui précède sous un autre angle.
    Les entreprises pharmaceutiques font en général pression sur les gouvernements lors de telles crises. Durant la pandémie de H1N1, la méthode adoptée par Roche a consisté essentiellement à persuader les gouvernements de signer des conventions d’achat de Tamiflu car, à l’époque, les premiers arrivés étaient les premiers servis.

    Il est à relever que ces négociations ont eu lieu dans un contexte de tension mondiale et de compétition inavouée entre les pays pour se procurer le traitement le plus vite possible à une même et unique source.

    Une telle situation démontre la gravité des pratiques monopolistiques du marché pharmaceutique mondial. La probabilité de voir se répéter ce scénario est d’autant plus grande que les pays continuent à négocier l’accès aux médicaments sur un marché monopolistique, comme le prouve l’achat par les États-Unis à Gilead Sciences de tout le stock existant de remdesivir et les conventions d’achat préalables de vaccins potentiels par plusieurs pays européens.

    A l’époque, les ventes d’oseltamivir avaient dépassé les 18 milliards de dollars étasuniens, payés pour moitié par les gouvernements. Les États-Unis ont par exemple dépensé plus de 1,5 milliard de dollars pour constituer des stocks d’oseltamivir, en se fondant sur les recommandations du CDC, alors que le Royaume-Uni a dépensé pour sa part 770 millions de dollars étasuniens pour ce même médicament entre 2006 et 2014.

    Aucune donnée officielle n’est disponible concernant la somme totale dépensée par l’Égypte pour acheter de l’oseltamivir. Quelques informations ont cependant fait état d’un accord entre le ministère de la santé et Roche pour la livraison de 2 500 kg de l’ingrédient pharmaceutique actif de ce médicament, à fabriquer par une succursale de la faîtière pharmaceutique, dont le président a estimé la valeur à environ 100 millions de livres égyptiennes.

    L’OMS est une organisation intergouvernementale qui doit, à ce titre, rendre des comptes à ses États membres. En 2010, ces États membres ont évalué les performances de l’OMS qui avait déclaré que la grippe H1N1 était une pandémie. Cette décision avait suscité les réserves de la communauté scientifique internationale et des milieux politiques, qui estimaient qu’elle avait été prématurée, provoquant une confusion mondiale et coûtant des millions de dollars aux budgets des pays.

    Ce qu’il est important de relever à propos de la lutte contre la COVID-19 est qu’il n’y a pas de “nouveau” médicament qui ait été expérimenté contre le virus. Ceux qui font l’objet d’études sont connus ou sont déjà sur le marché. Les essais auxquels ils sont soumis visent à démontrer qu’ils ont un effet spécifique contre le virus SARS-CoV-2 qui provoque la COVID-19.

    Ce repositionnement ou cette réorientation de médicaments existants constitue une pratique courante dans la recherche en cas de flambées épidémiques soudaines. En outre, qui plus est, la recherche et le développement pharmaceutiques ne produisent plus de substances pharmaceutiques “nouvelles”, se contentant le plus souvent d’améliorer des produits existants ou de leur ouvrir des indications supplémentaires.

    Les essais cliniques menés par l’OMS ont débuté avec quatre propositions de traitement, pour la plupart fort coûteux. Trois mois après le début déclaré de la pandémie, la compétition s’est réduite à deux médicaments : le remdesivir, produit par Gilead Sciences, et le favipiravir, produit par FUJIFILM Toyama Chemical, sous le nom commercial d’Avigan, dont il a été rapporté plus tard qu’il n’avait pas montré d’effet convaincant dans certains essais contre le coronavirus, ce qui a repoussé son approbation jusqu’à la fin des essais.

    En mars dernier, avec l’épidémie de COVID-19, la Food and Drug Administration (FDA) des États-Unis a décidé d’accorder au remdesivir le “statut de médicament orphelin”, qui assure normalement à l’entreprise productrice toute une série de droits exclusifs en plus des droits de propriété intellectuelle.
    Cette décision a été accueillie avec surprise et scepticisme dans les milieux spécialisés du monde entier, en raison de sa teneur et de son calendrier.

    Selon les définitions qu’en donnent tant l’OMS que le droit étasunien, les maladies orphelines sont celles qui affectent un petit nombre d’individus d’une manière qui n’incite pas à la mise au point de médicaments pour les traiter, ce qui justifie aussi le prix potentiellement élevé de leur traitement.

    La COVID-19, déclarée pandémie, est tout le contraire d’une maladie orpheline et la désignation comme “médicament orphelin” révèle l’intention de l’entreprise de maximaliser les ventes et les bénéfices du remdesivir une fois que la FDA l’a approuvé.
    Avec l’augmentation du nombre de cas diagnostiqués aux États-Unis d’Amérique, des pressions croissantes ont conduit Gilead Sciences à retirer sa désignation de médicament orphelin. Quelques semaines plus tard, le remdesivir a été approuvé par la FDA pour utilisation en cas d’urgence sur des patients atteints de COVID-19, à la suite de quoi l’entreprise a fait un don de 1,5 millions de traitements au gouvernement étasunien.

    A la mi-avril, les médias ont rapporté que le gouvernement égyptien avait convenu avec FUJIFILM Toyama Chemical d’utiliser le favipiravir (Avigan) pour le traitement de la COVID-19 en Égypte. Cet accord ne s’est jamais matérialisé, car quelques semaines plus tard le ministre de la santé a annoncé que l’Égypte participerait à l’essai clinique du remdesivir coordonné par l’OMS.

    Entretemps, l’entreprise égyptienne Eva Pharma a signé un accord de licence volontaire non-exclusif avec Gilead pour la fabrication de remdesivir destiné à être distribué dans 127 pays. Actuellement, l’approvisionnement en Égypte et limité à l’aide aux patients hospitalisés en quarantaine.
    Une préoccupation croissante a commencé à se manifester sur le plan mondial face à la précipitation avec laquelle on a compté sur le remdesivir avant que son efficacité soit démontrée, d’autant plus que les résultats des essais publiés montrent qu’il n’y a aucun bénéfice thérapeutique ayant la moindre signification statistique.

    Des demandes de brevet ont été déposées pour le remdesivir dans de nombreux pays et certaines ont déjà été accordées. Le bureau des brevets égyptien a rejeté la demande pour le remdesivir en 2017 pour des raisons techniques, mais la décision finale reste en suspens car le demandeur a fait appel.

    Gilead a récemment fixé le prix du traitement par le remdesivir (6 flacons) à 3 120 dollars étasuniens pour les privés et à 2 340 dollars pour les régimes d’assurance nationaux aux États-Unis d’Amérique. Le prix de ce médicament est exorbitant et ne peut être justifié ni par les coûts de recherche et de développement, car il ne s’agit pas d’un nouveau composé, qui n’a donc pas été breveté dans plusieurs pays.

    Par ailleurs, la recherche a démontré que le coût de production du remdesivir pourrait ne pas dépasser 5,58 dollars par traitement. D’ailleurs, l’entreprise pharmaceutique indienne Cipla a annoncé qu’elle produirait une version générique du remdesivir au prix d’environ 400 dollars étasuniens.

    A la lumière des taux élevés d’incidence et de mortalité de la COVID-19, ainsi que des pressions exercées sur les gouvernements pour qu’ils prennent des mesures destinées à protéger leurs peuples, on assiste à une compétition entre les entreprises pharmaceutiques pour préserver leurs parts d’un marché mondial lucratif.

    Cette compétition se manifeste par des tentatives d’enrôler de grandes quantités de patients dans des essais cliniques hâtivement menés pour faire la démonstration de résultats favorables, ou défavorables, à un médicament donné, pour signer des conventions d’achat préalables avec des gouvernements, comme c’est le cas actuellement entre Gilead et le gouvernement étasunien, et pour chercher à faire enregistrer les brevets dans le plus grand nombre de pays possible afin d’y obtenir des droits exclusifs, notamment la possibilité de vendre le médicament au prix le plus élevé possible.

    Au milieu de la crise actuelle, dont les répercussions économiques et sociales au niveau mondial sont sans précédent, il est préoccupant d’assister au retour du scénario H1N1. Les gouvernements se lancent une fois de plus dans des “achats de panique” et accumulent de manière irrationnelle des stocks de médicaments, dont aucun n’a fait la preuve de son efficacité contre la COVID-19. Ne tire-t-on vraiment aucun enseignement du passé récent ?
    #H5N1 #grippe_aviaire #H1N1 #vaccins #oseltamivir #argent #santé #gros_sous #capitalisme #big_pharma #laboratoires_pharmacetiques #Roche #Tamiflu #OMS #CDC #Egypte #experts #monopole #Gilead #Agence_européenne_des_médicaments #confinement #pandémies #pandémie #grippe #remdesivir #SARS-CoV-2 #covid-19 #coronavirus #favipiravir #FUJIFILM #Avigan #FDA #médicament_orphelin #maladie_orpheline #Eva_Pharma #thérapie #brevets #recherche #Cipla #marché #panique

  • Tech C.E.O.s From Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google to Testify Before Congress
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/28/technology/amazon-apple-facebook-google-antitrust-hearing.html?campaign_id=158&emc=edi

    The tech C.E.O.s will appear together at a congressional hearing on Wednesday to argue that their companies do not stifle competition. WASHINGTON — After lawmakers collected hundreds of hours of interviews and obtained more than 1.3 million documents about Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google, their chief executives will testify before Congress on Wednesday to defend their powerful businesses from the hammer of government. The captains of the New Gilded Age — Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Tim Cook of (...)

    #Apple #Google #TikTok #Amazon #Facebook #AppleStore #GooglePlay #payement #domination #BigData #GAFAM (...)

    ##FTC

  • If you’re not terrified about Facebook, you haven’t been paying attention
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/jul/26/with-facebook-we-are-already-through-the-looking-glass?CMP=share_btn_tw

    Facebook and America are now indivisible, says the Observer journalist who broke the Cambridge Analytica scandal – and the world is a sicker place for it In 2016, we didn’t know. We were innocent. We still believed social media connected us and that connections were good. That technology equalled progress. And progress equalled better. Four years on, we know too much. And yet, it turns out, we understand nothing. We know social media is a bin fire and that the world is burning. But it’s (...)

    #DataPropria #CambridgeAnalytica/Emerdata #FBI #Facebook #Instagram #WhatsApp #manipulation #données #élections #BigData #microtargeting #publicité (...)

    ##CambridgeAnalytica/Emerdata ##publicité ##SocialNetwork
    https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/ce781bc53cdba8703e9c035e177769d00c87624c/0_177_5184_3112/master/5184.jpg

  • Aux Etats-Unis, des profils ADN très peu confidentiels
    https://www.lemonde.fr/idees/article/2018/06/09/aux-etats-unis-des-profils-adn-tres-peu-confidentiels_5312037_3232.html

    Les résultats des tests « maison », dont raffolent les particuliers américains, forment de colossales bases de données génétiques. Si mal protégées que même la police s’en sert… Joseph James DeAngelo et William Earl Talbott II n’avaient sans doute jamais entendu ­parler de GEDmatch. Située en Floride, cette ­entreprise de taille modeste spécialisée dans les recherches généalogiques n’avait non plus jamais eu affaire à eux. A la surprise générale et à leur insu, leurs routes se sont pourtant croisées ces (...)

    #FamilyTreeDNA #AncestryDNA #23andMe #GEDmatch #MyHeritage #génétique #police #données #prédiction #BigData #hacking #santé (...)

    ##santé ##AfricanAncestry

  • Relations avec la Chine, espionnage des mineurs… Ce que l’on sait de la collecte de données par TikTok
    https://www.lemonde.fr/pixels/article/2020/07/21/relations-avec-la-chine-espionnage-des-mineurs-ce-que-l-on-sait-sur-la-colle

    Connu pour sa popularité auprès des jeunes utilisateurs, le réseau social génère de nombreuses inquiétudes en matière de données personnelles. Adulé par les adolescents et les jeunes adultes, le réseau social TikTok est de nouveau sous le feu des projecteurs, après les dernières accusations portant sur les données qu’il collecterait au travers de ses applications mobiles. Déjà condamné aux Etats-Unis par la Federal Trade Commission (FTC), le régulateur américain du commerce, à une amende de 5,7 millions (...)

    #ByteDance #TikTok #spyware #données #BigData #enfants

  • Doctolib victime d’une fuite de données concernant 6 218 rendez-vous médicaux
    https://www.lesnumeriques.com/vie-du-net/doctolib-victime-d-une-fuite-de-donnees-concernant-6-218-rendez-vous-

    Les données concernant 6 128 rendez-vous pris via la plateforme Doctolib ont été interceptées frauduleusement. Le site de prise de rendez-vous médicaux explique avoir stoppé l’attaque, mais des données sensibles ont été vues. Doctolib a été victime d’une importante fuite de données personnelles. Le 23 juillet 2020, le site de prise de rendez-vous a tiré la sonnette d’alarme et expliqué avoir été victime d’un acte malveillant rapidement stoppé. Cet accès non autorisé visait “des informations administratives (...)

    #Doctolib #données #BigData #hacking #santé

    ##santé

  • #Covid-19 Vaccines With ‘Minor Side Effects’ Could Still Be Pretty Bad | WIRED
    https://www.wired.com/story/covid-19-vaccines-with-minor-side-effects-could-still-be-pretty-bad

    L’article reproche aux journalistes mainstream de se montrer peu curieux concernant les déclarations des sociétés pharmaceutiques sur leur #vaccin et de se contenter de répéter les propos lénifiants qu’elles égrènent, alors que ces derniers ont pour principal objectif de faire monter la #cotation en #bourse de leurs #actions et pour principale conséquence de conforter les a-priori des anti-#vaccins.

    The press release for Monday’s publication of results from the Oxford vaccine trials described an increased frequency of “minor side effects” among participants. A look at the actual paper, though, reveals this to be a marketing spin that has since been parroted in media reports. (The phrases “minor side effects” or “only minor side effects” appeared in writeups from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Reuters, among other outlets.) Yes, mild reactions were far more common than worse ones. But moderate or severe harms—defined as being bad enough to interfere with daily life or needing medical care—were common too. Around one-third of people vaccinated with the Covid-19 vaccine without acetaminophen experienced moderate or severe chills, fatigue, headache, malaise, and/or feverishness. Close to 10 percent had a fever of at least 100.4 degrees, and just over one-fourth developed moderate or severe muscle aches. That’s a lot, in a young and healthy group of people—and the acetaminophen didn’t help much for most of those problems. The paper’s authors designated the vaccine as “acceptable” and “tolerated,” but we don’t yet know how acceptable this will be to most people. If journalists don’t start asking tougher questions, this will become the perfect setup for anti-vaccine messaging: Here’s what they forgot to tell you about the risks …

    There is another red flag. Clinical trials for other Covid-19 vaccines have placebo groups, where participants receive saline injections. Only one of the Oxford vaccine trials is taking this approach, however; the others instead compare the experimental treatment to an injected meningococcal vaccine. There can be good reasons to do this: Non-placebo injections may mimic telltale signs that you’ve received an active vaccine, such as a skin reaction, making the trial more truly “blind.” But their use also opens the door to doubt-sowing claims that any harms of the new vaccine are getting buried among the harms already caused by the control-group, “old” vaccines.

    Coverage of the Moderna vaccine reflects a different kind of pharma spin : the drip-feeding of selective data via press release. On May 18, Moderna put out some patchy, positive findings on interim outcomes from their first-in-human trial. The company followed that up with a stock offering—and company executives sold off nearly $30 million in shares into the feeding frenzy their press release created.

    With last week’s paper from Moderna, results from that same group of people finally had their formal publication. At the same time, the group registered a 30,000-person phase III clinical trial, specifying a pair of 100-microgram injections of the Covid-19 vaccine. According to the press release from May, there were no serious adverse events for the people in that particular dosage group. But last week’s paper shows the full results: By the time they’d had two doses, every single one was showing signs of headaches, chills, or fatigue, and for at least 80 percent, this could have been enough to interfere with their normal activities. A participant who had a severe reaction to a particularly high dose has talked in detail about how bad it was: If reactions even half as bad as this were to be common for some of these vaccines, they will be hard sells once they reach the community—and there could be a lot of people who are reluctant to get the second injection.

    #big_pharma #pharma #manipulations #MSM