UNHCR published it comments on the Commission’s amended proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the establishment of 'EURODAC'.

Friday, October 4, 2013

It observed that the original purpose of Eurodac, as set out in the Eurodac Regulation, is to facilitate the operation of the Dublin II Regulation with the aim of determining the Member State responsible for examining an asylum application. Based on this, UNHCR considered that Eurodac in principle should be used for its original, limited purpose, and not for objectives extending far beyond that. However, should this proposal be adopted, UNHCR recommended that several safeguards are put in place, including in particular:

- the possibility of error in matching fingerprints and the wrongful implication of asylum-seekers in criminal investigations is fully examined and eliminated to the greatest extent possible before the possibility to search Eurodac with latent fingerprints is introduced;
- the provisions on the prohibition of transfer of information on asylum-seekers or refugees to third countries are reinforced and clarified to eliminate any gaps in the protection of data;
- the potential for stigmatisation of asylum-seekers, through an implied association with criminal activity, is evaluated;
- the scope of the instruments limits law enforcement access to cases where there is substantial suspicion that the perpetrator or suspect has applied for asylum; and
- the applicant is informed that his/her data may be used for the purpose of criminal investigation.

To read the Comments in full; please visit Refworld

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