Sophie in ‘t Veld will be speaking at the Computers, Privacy and Data Protection Conference in the panel discussion about "National security: A free licence for government surveillance?".
Description of the theme:
Because national security issues can involve high stakes, it is especially important to critically analyse arguments invoking national security as a justification for measures limiting citizen’s rights to, in particular, data protection.
However, a universally accepted definition of national security does not exist. Both at international and national level the term is generally not circumscribed with adequate specificity so as to ensure that data protection infringements can be effectively reviewed in courts to ensure compliance with a strict test of what is necessary and proportionate.
In this panel, policy makers, academics, lawyers and law enforcement specialists will debate if and how the notion of national security as a justification for surveillance measures can be better embedded in national democratic systems, where a key element of constitutionality remains in the effective judicial control and supervision of government action.
Questions to be addressed:
• How do the different stakeholders understand the notion of national security, particularly in relation to government surveillance?
• Is it possible and desirable to define the notion of national security?
• What measures can be taken to avoid or limit abuses of the use of national security exceptions to restrict data protection rights.
• Do stakeholders believe that the exception of “national security” also includes the possibility of EU member states to assist certain third countries in conducting surveillance of citizens in the EU?