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Controversial entries in Lex pilot. Comments of politicians and experts

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In Lex pilot, not only what we watch on TV is crucial. One article in particular is controversial because it gives insight into what we send via instant messengers and e-mails without court approval. In addition, it gives the services knowledge of where we were at that time. Material of the magazine “Polska i Świat”.

Citizens still want to know more. The act that the Sejm is working on assumes that the services will be able to download data identifying the user in the network – e.g. IP number, information from where he sent messages, when he did it and where he was then. All without court approval.

– The information will be stored for a year, only so that the services can rummage through this information and search for anything that interests them about us – says Wojciech Klicki from the Panoptykon Foundation.

– This act, instead of implementing EU regulations, introduces those that are inconsistent with this law – believes Arkadiusz Marchewka from Platforma Obywatelska. – This is the law of universal surveillance – assesses Krzysztof Gawkowski from the Left.

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PiS wants more powers for the services

The act was originally created to respond to EU guidelines – then more powers for the services were added. – Politicians of the ruling party like to have this type of tools in their hands in order to have tools for political struggle – assesses Adam Szłapka from Nowoczesna.

The collected data allow, for example, to recreate certain networks of connections and communication. And in some cases this is enough to make certain theses. – There are 400 regulations, and for two weeks no government representative found time to meet members of the parliamentary committee – says Gawkowski.

Concerns about abuse of surveillance tools

Since the act was referred to the committee – two weeks ago – he has not really found time. In the meantime, auto-corrections have been made to the project. – This is an attempt to give themselves legal tools for what they already use on a daily basis – believes Szłapka.

The chairman of the special commission argues that there is no question of any surveillance and adds that everything is introduced only with the thought of more effective actions of officers. – Criminals have increasingly sophisticated ways of communicating and the point is to control criminals or some terrorist groups – assures Waldemar Andzel from Law and Justice.

Experts and the opposition fear the abuse of surveillance tools by the authoritiesTVN24

– This is the first power after the 1980s that used weapons, cybernetic weapons against its own citizens – claims Marcin Kierwiński from Platforma Obywatelska.

PiS has already abused surveillance tools – using Pegasus for this. The services are headed by people who, according to the opposition, simply cannot be trusted. – Which have already been convicted once by a Polish court for exceeding their powers, for using this type of tools – argues Kierwiński.

Doubts about article 43

Magdalena Sroka from the Agreement, to the explanations of PiS politicians that the services must also have access to the new messengers used by criminals, replies that such possibilities already exist: – Based on the regulations that are currently in force in Poland. This is called operational control.

Doubts also concern Article 43 of the Act. According to some lawyers, this provision may result in the services also having access to the content sent via messengers.

– I am afraid that in practice this may mean introducing the so-called “back doors”, rear entrances for services, or limiting the possibility of encrypting communication – warns Klicki.

The bill is now to be considered at the next meeting of the Sejm digitization committee – on Thursday.

Main photo source: Adobe Stock

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