EU Parliament reaches agreement on CSAM regulation

24/10/2023 | EURACTIV

The European Parliament's main political groups have agreed on a draft law to combat the dissemination of online child sexual abuse material (CSAM). The proposed regulation will require digital platforms in the EU to detect and report such material. The draft law had previously attracted criticism, similar to that the Online Safety Bill received before the UK government's last-minute climb down, as it allowed judicial authorities to scan users' private messages for suspected content on services like WhatsApp or Gmail. The agreed text now focuses on the EU Centre and detection orders. The EU Centre is an independent hub of expertise to combat child sexual abuse, which will now have the most extensive legal capacity accorded to legal persons under the law of each member state.

In a related article, TechCrunch reports the proposed CSAM law received strong opposition from over 20 speakers at a seminar organised by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) on Monday, 23 October. WiewiĆ³rowski suggested the EU could be at a tipping point should lawmakers move forward with a law requiring the systemic, mass surveillance of private messaging. He added that the consequences of such a law would go "well beyond what concerns with the protection of children".

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