Protest against super database in Romania

By EDRi · October 8, 2003

Human rights experts in Romania issued harsh criticism at the government
resolution adopted last week to set up an Integrated Information System
(SII), as they consider it as extremely dense, imprecise and giving room
to arbitrary interpretation. The SII is a database that will
centralise the information held by all public institutions regarding
natural and legal persons, that may likely become the electronic arm of
the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI).

Manuela Stefanescu, representative of the Association for the Defence of
Human Rights in Romania – the Helsinki Committee (APADOR-CH), said the
government resolution referred to a decision of the Supreme Defence
Council (CSAT), which could not be a substitute for the parliament.
“Furthermore, this is not a public resolution, because if you take a look
on the CSAT’s web site, you will see that the latest resolutions of the
council are from 2001”, said Stefanescu. Consequently, the government
resolution on the setting up of the SII refers to a CSAT decision which
has not been published and therefore it does not exist and is also
unconstitutional, said the APADOR-CH official.

She said her organisation agreed to the article published in “Evenimentul
Zilei” daily which said the people who would control the SII would
actually control everything. “We do not know to whom this integrated
information system is subordinated, we do not know to whom it is of use,
and it is extremely dangerous to create a superpower, especially without
the slightest guarantee that the personal data will be protected (…)
Furthermore, natural and legal persons lack any means of controlling the
way in which the data centralised in this mammoth system is used (…)”,
said Manuela Stefanescu.

Evenimnetul Zilei (in English, 29.10.2003)

(Contribution by Bogdan Manolea, legal coordinator RITI – Romanian
Information Technology Initiative)