A bill that would allow police in France to spy on suspects by remotely activating cameras, microphone including GPS of their phones has been passed.
The bill allows the geolocation of crime suspects, covering other devices like laptops, cars and connected devices, just as it could be remotely activated to record sound and images of people suspected of terror offences, as well as delinquency and organised crime.
The provisions “raise serious concerns over infringements of fundamental liberties,” stated a French advocacy group promoting digital rights and freedoms, La Quadrature du Net.
The group cited the “right to security, right to a private life and to private correspondence” and “the right to come and go freely,” specifically called the proposal a part of a “slide into heavy-handed security.”
But lawmakers agreed to the bill late Wednesday as Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti insisted the bill would affect only “dozens of cases a year.”
During the debate on Wednesday, the members of parliament in the camp of President Emmanuel Macron added an amendment restricting the use of remote spying to “when justified by the nature and seriousness of the crime” and “for a strictly proportional duration.” They noted that a judge must approve any use of the provision, while the exact length of the surveillance cannot go beyond six months.
They said delicate professions, including doctors, journalists, lawyers, judges and MPs, would not be logical objects.
Last month, the Senate gave the green light to the provision of the justice bill, which would permit law enforcement to clandestinely activate cameras and microphones on a suspect’s devices.
Since 2015, when terrorist attacks rocked France, the country has expanded its surveillance powers, and the “Keeper of the Seal” bill has been compared to the infamous US Patriot Act.
TRUMP: When I return to office, the travel ban is coming back. The United States will not be condemned to the same fate as France" pic.twitter.com/3JOhM9jQPZ
— Jack Poso 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) July 7, 2023
And just like that France went full 1984
French police gain remote spying powers – media https://t.co/hha3q61Eg8 #
— NinnyD 🇬🇧❤️🇺🇸 Waiting~4~the Revolution (@ninnyd101) July 7, 2023
France set to allow police to spy through phones
French police should be able to spy on suspects by remotely activating the camera, microphone and GPS of their phones and other devices, lawmakers agreed late on Wednesday, July 5. Part of a wider justice reform bill, the spying… pic.twitter.com/40s1yLTcGa
— AɯƙɯαɾԃMαɱα™® (@Aspiemama_107) July 6, 2023
France To Grant Police Phone #Spying Powers
French lawmakers have agreed to a justice #reform bill that includes a provision giving police the power to geolocate suspects using phones and other devices.
French police should be able to spy on suspects by remotely activating the… pic.twitter.com/si6rDiw8dC
— RT_India (@RT_India_news) July 7, 2023