Stop surveillance activities in Romania!

Romania is currently undergoing rapid and major technological development, but we have to make sure the new technology respects users' rights. Under Ceaușescu, Romanians were forced to register all typrewriters to the Militia. Today, the government wants all Romanians to register all pre-paid SIM cards and record all traffic going through free public WiFi hotspots.

Just one month after the ECJ decision declaring the Data Retention Directive invalid, the Romanian Government made three decisions to continue and even extend mass surveillance by:

  • ignoring the ECJ decision and keeping the law 82/2012 regarding the data retention to be enforced anyway.
  • adopting, without any kind of public consultation, a law requiring registration of all prepaied sim card users (including forcing the current 12 million users to submit their personal data during the next 6 months or face disconnection). This is all the more egregious given that this is the 4th such attempt since 2011.
  • planning to require providers of free public WiFi hotspots to identify their users.
  • adopting, without any kind of public consultation, a new law giving agents of the state the power to examine data in any computer system whatsoever without a court order, including your computer, in order to "have access to the data being held".

The signatories, participants of Fundația Ceata's Coliberator conference, as well as other people and organizations supporting this protest, are demanding the Romanian government and the Romanian public institutions to respect the citizens' privacy rights.

Thus, the signatories:

Remind that privacy is a fundamental human right, and that it is central to the existence and survival of democratic societies. It is essential to human dignity and it reinforces other rights, such as freedom of expression and information, and freedom of association, and is recognised under international human rights law. Activities that restrict the right to privacy, including communications surveillance, can only be justified when they are prescribed by law, when they are necessary to achieve a legitimate aim, and when they are proportionate to the aim pursued. (International Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance)
Demand the immediate rejection by Parliament and withdrawal by the Government of the above mentioned draft laws that are infringing the right of privacy of the Romanian citizens.
Ask for an rapid annulment of the data retention law in order to respect the ECJ decision.
Underscore that any future action of the government that could affect the right of privacy or any other fundamental rights must be drafted and adopted only after meeting the transparency requirements made by Law 52/2003, with a full human rights impact assessment and with a mandatory opinion from the Romanian Data Protection Authority.

Sign the petition!

ActiveWatch / CC BY 3.0