Proposal for a Regulation amending Regulation (EU) 2018/1862 on the establishment, operation and use of the SIS in the field of police cooperation and judicial cooperation in criminal matters as regards the entry of alerts by Europol
On 9 December 2020, the European Commission presented a proposal for a regulation amending Regulation (EU) 2018/1862 on the establishment, operation and use of the Schengen Information System (SIS) in the field of police cooperation and judicial cooperation in criminal matters as regards the entry of alerts by Europol.
This proposal is closely linked with and complements other EU legislative instruments, notably on Europol, insofar as this proposal grants Europol additional rights to process and exchange data within its mandate, in SIS.
In the context of on-going EU efforts to facilitate the detection of persons involved in terrorism-related activities, including foreign terrorist fighters, the Commission identifies several gaps in the sharing of third-country sourced information. While Europol holds valuable information on suspects and criminals that it received from third countries and international organisations, it is not able to provide directly and in real-time frontline officers with the information they need. According to the proposal, this is partly due to the rules governing access to Europol’s information systems, in addition to the fact that Europol is not able to issue alerts in SIS as the most widely used information-sharing database in the EU that is directly accessible for border guards and police officers.
In order to address this security gap, the proposed regulation aims to establish a new alert category specifically for Europol, in order to provide information directly and in real-time to frontline officers. It is intended to enable Europol to issue ‘information alerts’ on suspects and criminals as a new alert category in SIS, for exclusive use by Europol in specific and well-defined cases and circumstances. The purpose of the new alert category is that in case of a ‘hit’, the alert would inform the frontline officer that the person concerned is suspect of being involved in a criminal offence falling within the competence of Europol.
The proposal includes additional amendments to Regulation (EU) 2018/1862 in order to align its provisions concerning data protection, in particular the right of access, rectification of inaccurate data and erasure of unlawfully stored data, remedies and liability with Regulation (EU) 2016/794 and Regulation (EU) 2018/1725 insofar as those alignments are necessary due to the new alert category to be entered by Europol.
In the European Parliament the file is assigned to the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee and the rapporteur is Mr Javier ZARZALEJOS.
On 10 March 2021 the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) issued a document containing formal comment on the proposal for amendment of Regulation (EU) 2018/1862. Among others, the EDPS highlights that the proposal needs to encompass specific criteria to guide Europol when carrying out an individual assessment and taking a decision to issue an information alert in SIS. Moreover, the EDPS recommended that there should be clear guidance regarding the measures which competent authorities could take in case of a ‘hit’. On 16 March 2021 and 7 June 2021 the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs issued drafts reports with certain amendments to the proposal.
On 13 October 2021 the Council adopted its position for the negotiations with the European Parliament. Similarly as the proposal above, on 12 October 2021, the LIBE Committee adopted its report and decided to open interinstitutional negotiations. The decision was later approved in plenary on 21 October 2021.
The first political trilogue took place on 27 October 2021.
type: Proposal for a regulation
Reference number: COM(2020)791 final
Issue date: 09-12-20
Uploads: SIS Regulation proposal