The European Commission condemns any interception of communications by individuals, hacking information systems is a crime in the European Union, said Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders in Strasbourg during the European Parliament’s plenary debate on the Pegasus spyware scandal.
Didier Reynders stressed that using spyware can track offenders, but only the appropriate authority reason. Such activity must also comply with all the rules, including the principles set out in the data protection agreement. The protection of personal data is always at a higher level under EU fundamental rights laws and national constitutions, he stressed. He added that national authorities must ensure that any interception is proportionate and justified.
He stated that the fact that the Pegasus scandal was affecting the European Union meant that these rules were not being applied properly. He recalled that the competent authorities of the Member States had to launch an investigation and investigate all cases involving the acquisition of intelligence. He said that the Hungarian data protection authorities have already closed the investigation, the data of which will be sent to the appropriate bodies soon. And the inspection bodies have two months to carry out the review, but the time limit can be extended if necessary, he added.
The commissioner also said that the European Union is closely monitoring the Hungarian investigation, the Guardian.
According to Sophie In ‘t Veld, head of the European Parliament’s Committee on Justice
reports that the Hungarian government has also used Pegasus are extremely worrying. A full and independent investigation is needed in this case. Journalists, politicians and activists must do their job freely without a spying on an increasingly authoritarian government. If the opposite were to be found, it would be a gross violation of personal freedoms.
In his speech, Tamás Deutsch, a Fidesz MEP, said that since the Orbán government took office in 2010, the Hungarian national security services have not and will not carry out illegal surveillance. Hungary is a democratic state governed by the rule of law, where everyone has acted and is acting in accordance with the legislation in force.
In her speech, Anna Donáth, MEP of the Momentum Movement, said that the Hungarian government was the only one in the European Union to use Pegasus spyware against its own citizens at the state level. The phones of journalists, students, lawyers, opposition politicians have been hacked and silenced, which means trampling on European values, democracy and the rule of law, he said.
In the speech by the Member
proposed the establishment of an independent commission of inquiry, the hearing of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in the European Parliament and his accountability.
In his speech, Márton Gyöngyösi, MEP of Jobbik, said that when an authority or a government uses spyware, it does so in a specific procedure, within a specific time limit, in matters of national security, under parliamentary control or under the supervision of an appropriate committee.
In a statement sent to MTI, István Ujhelyi, MEP of the MSZP, expressed his expectation that the EU institutions would use all possible means to force the Orbán government to account for the use of Pegasus software and to prove that it did not use spyware. observing journalists, politicians, European partners. Clairvoyance is in the interests not only of the Hungarian people, but also of the European community, the socialist politician added in his statement.