June 2019 infringements package: key decisions

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Official Journal (C Series): Call for proposals – GR/002/19 Support for awareness-raising activities on the value of intellectual property and the damage caused by counterfeiting and piracy

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Press Release: First Significant Fine Was Imposed for the Breaches of the General Data Protection Regulation in Lithuania

The State Data Protection Inspectorate has imposed an administrative fine in the amount of EUR 61,500 for the breaches of the General Data Protection Regulation. The sanctions were imposed on MisterTango UAB for the breaches of Articles 5, 32 and 33 of the afore-mentioned Regulation, i.e. the personal data breach in the payment initiation service system which, inter alia, has also not been reported to the supervisory authority. In the opinion of the Inspectorate, the start of imposing fines under the General Data Protection Regulation should be a significant signal to other companies which only declaratively comply with the provisions of the above legal acts.

CULT Activity Report of the 8th legislature

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UPDATED – Agenda: Coreper 2 Meeting (22 May 2019)

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Speech: Commissioner King’s remarks at the Aspen Institute dinner in Berlin: Security Cooperation – the power of likeminded nations working together

16 May 2019

“In this time, we have been faced by a range of security issues. We have worked to tackle terrorism, by closing down the space in which terrorists operate – cutting down on their access to money, weapons and explosives, and making it harder for them to travel around – by building our resilience to attacks and our ability to recover from them, and by tackling the radicalisation and online terrorist content that fuel extremism.

We have undertaken efforts to combat the growing and evolving array of cyber and cyber-enabled threats, by putting in place a new EU cybersecurity strategy in order to build our resilience, strengthen our deterrence and support Member States in cyber defence; and then by working to strengthen election security and tackle disinformation online, including by working with Member States and the big internet platforms”

Speech: Commissioner King’s keynote speech at the Aspen Institute Berlin Cybersecurity Forum

16 May 2019

“The range of cyber and cyber-enabled threats is expanding and evolving. Cyberattacks are growing both in number and in sophistication, touching on all parts of the economy, governance and our daily lives, affecting individuals, major business and critical infrastructure. And over the past year or so, we have seen the growth of the more pernicious, politically-driven kinds of security threat posed by disinformation and attempted interference in our democratic processes. Finally, we need to think carefully about how the EU can ensure the security of its critical digital infrastructure in the coming years, including the incoming 5G networks.”

Press Release: GozNym Malware – Cybercriminal Network Dismantled in International Operation

An unprecedented, international law enforcement operation has dismantled a complex, globally operating and organised cybercrime network. The criminal network used GozNym malware in an attempt to steal an estimated $100 million from more than 41 000 victims, primarily businesses and their financial institutions.

Press Release: High time to protect the internet route map – Here are 7 basics

BGP hijacks, hacking the internet route map, continue to happen. Despite years of warnings by security experts. This spells danger for national security, privacy of citizens, and the resilience of the internet, both in Europe and globally.

Last year ENISA surveyed a range of large and small providers across the EU, confirming that BGP hijacks are an issue also in the EU: 44% of respondents said that the impact of BGP incidents is high, affecting large numbers of users and last for many hours, and 93%  say it needs an urgent fix.

Event: AI-enabled Facial Recognition: More than just ethics? (Brussels, 05 June 2019)

Facial recognition technology has been advancing rapidly over the past decade and is starting to be common in more devices, more places and real time. The odds are that facial biometrical information is already being analysed regularly.

While there are numerous positive use cases, facial recognition has been identified by the High Level Expert Group on AI as a critical concern, and in June, the European Commission will put its recently published AI ethical guidelines to a test.

Press Release: DeepDotWeb shut down – administrators suspected of receiving millions of kickbacks from illegal dark web proceeds

The two suspected administrators of a website known as DeepDotWeb have been arrested on 6 May 2019 in Paris, France and Israel. Authorities in the US have charged the two individuals after an internationally coordinated operation today, supported by Europol. At the same time, the DeepDotWeb website was seized by law enforcement and judicial authorities.

The two suspects, both Israeli citizens, have been charged by a US federal jury with money laundering conspiracy, relating to millions of dollars in kickbacks they received for purchases of fentanyl, heroin and other illegal goods, by individuals referred to dark web marketplaces by DeepDotWeb.

Press Release: Cryptocurrency laundering as a service – members of a criminal organisation arrested in Spain

The criminals carried out several money laundering schemes involving the transfer from fiat currency to virtual assets to hide the illegal origin of the proceeds. Some of the identified modi operandi used crypto ATMs and smurfing, a criminal method used to split illicit proceeds into smaller sums and placing these small amounts into the financial system to avoid suspicious transaction reporting.

Recommendation for a Council Decision authorising the participation in negotiations on a second Additional Protocol to the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime (CETS No. 185)

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Press Release: Latvia’s decision to suspend broadcast of the Russian language channel “Rossiya RTR” complies with EU law

The European Commission decided, on 3 May 2019, that the Latvian regulator’s decision to suspend for three months the retransmission of a Russian language channel “Rossiya RTR”, due to incitement to hatred, is compatible with EU law. The decision has been notified today to the Member States

The Latvian authorities informed the Commission in March 2019 that the Russian language channel “Rossiya RTR”, broadcasting to Latvia from Sweden, had been broadcasting content that could be deemed as incitement to hatred. The language used during some programmes on “Rossiya RTR” referred to military confrontations and contained unambiguous calls for, and threats of, indiscriminate violence, occupation or destruction in foreign countries, including the Baltic states. The Latvian authorities therefore decided to suspend the retransmission of the channel for three months.

Press Release: Double blow to dark web marketplaces

Two prolific dark web marketplaces have been taken down in simultaneous global operations, supported by Europol: the Wall Street Market and the Silkkitie (known as the Valhalla Marketplace)
Those responsible for the world’s second largest illegal online market in the dark web, Wall Street Market, were also arrested in Germany, and two of the highest-selling suppliers of narcotics were arrested in US.

Agenda: Meeting of the Horizontal Working Party on cyber issues (07 May 2019)

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UPDATED: Opinion: #DigitalRespect4Her Testimonies

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Press Release: The Data Protection Ombudsman ordered Svea Ekonomi to correct its practices in the processing of personal data

Two cases concerning Svea Ekonomi, a financial credit company, have been processed at the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman. As a result, the Data Protection Ombudsman has ordered the company to correct its practices in the processing of personal data related to the assessment of creditworthiness, the right of inspect one’s own personal data and notification practices.

Press Release: Code of practice against disinformation – Commission welcomes the commitment of online platforms ahead of the European elections

Today, the European Commission published the latest reports by Facebook, Google and Twitter covering the progress made in March 2019 to fight disinformation. The three online platforms are signatories to the Code of Practice against disinformation and have committed to report monthly on their actions ahead of the European Parliament elections in May 2019.

Press Release: Eurojust helps dismantle transnational criminal network

The Romanian national authorities, in close cooperation with the Dutch national authorities and with the active support of Eurojust, dismantled an organised crime group (OCG) involved in cybercrime, fraud and organised property crime causing damages estimated at €2 million for the period 2017-2019. During the joint action day, a coordination centre was set up at Eurojust, which allowed for real-time exchange of information between the authorities. Overall, today, 46 houses and several trucks were searched, 6 suspects were identified and presented before the Romanian prosecutor, 14 witnesses were heard, and telephones, laptops, forged ID documents and licence plates, as well as stolen goods, were seized.

Note: Drug demand reduction and prevention and health-related interventions on the internet/darknet

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Statement: Joint statement by Commissioners Jourová and Gabriel on the launch of the #DigitalRespect4Her campaign

Commissioners for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Věra Jourová and for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel launched today a campaign to raise awareness on violence that women face online every day. They said in a joint statement:

“Dignity, respect and solidarity apply to all of us, also online. Yet, sadly, reality is far from this, especially for women and girls, who are 27 times more likely to be harassed online than men are.

It is time to step up the response to online violence. We cannot stay idle and encourage those that cowardly target women and girls online. We have to act and call it out.”

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