Coppernic exec urges biometrics from European vendors for Entry-Exit System
The Managing Director of Coppernic has urged the EU to consider deploying European biometric solutions, like the terminals his company makes, for the upcoming Entry-Exit System (EES) as opposed to those from China or elsewhere.
Writing in a blog post on Coppernic’s website (in French), Kevin Lecuivre praised the advantages of the upcoming system, which will create a European biometric database designed to improve border security and management for the Schengen Area.
“We can obviously see the benefits of such an innovation for the various police services involved in the fight against illegal immigration, human trafficking, terrorism, and certain other serious forms of crime,” Lecuivre wrote.
Despite its centralized nature, however, the new system will leave individual states free to pick their own biometric solution providers to deploy at each sea or land access point to the EU.
“We know from experience that some will only decide on the basis of the price, even if it means turning to non-European solutions, probably Chinese,” the Managing Director writes.
Lecuivre went on to describe the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the European Union as a world reference in the field of personal data protection, and how member states should pick biometric solutions that are compliant with these rules.
“It’s worth remembering that the EU recently warned Member States about using Huawei for the most sensitive parts of the future 5G network,” he added, mentioning the possibility of ‘back doors’ hidden access in software.
According to Lecuivre, choosing European companies for the deployment of biometric solutions for the EES would represent an additional guarantee.
In addition, the EU is reportedly going to invest €34.9 billion (US$42.2 billion) on the new system between 2021 and 2027. Of these funds, 75 percent will be paid by the Union, but the remaining 25 percent will be up to member states.
“On the eve of massive investments in these areas, it would be appropriate for the European Union to take some precautions regarding its suppliers,” he explained.
Coppernic’s Managing Director concluded his post by addressing the EU directly.
“My experience as a business leader has led me to believe that the changes to come will have consequences on our security, our technological independence, and our sovereignty. Europe must change its approach!”