Highlights of our work
Through its member societies, CEPIS is active in various topical fields of the digital world. Below you can find out about the most important initiatives and activities on a pan-European level.
CEPIS Statement on right to encryption instead of a master key for encrypted communication
CEPIS’ Legal and Security Issues Special Interest Network (LSI SIN) calls for the rejection of a planned resolution in the Council of Ministers, which would grant authorities special access to encrypted communication between EU citizens. The special access, or ‘master key’, will weaken end-to-end encryption, and endangers digitisation in Europe, the LSI network warns: “The initiative endangers not only the informational self-determination of EU citizens but also the protection of company and business secrets. Undermining the efforts towards legally binding corporate communication by weakening encryption, is ultimately hindering the necessary digitalisation of the European economy.”
CEPIS response to the Digital Education Action Plan update roadmap
In response to the European Commission’s public consultation on the Digital Education action plan (DEAP) update, CEPIS, with contributions of our Computing in Schools expert group, has submitted its views on the matter. CEPIS considers that the updated DEAP should increase the digital capacity and make efforts to distribute EU funds in a way that would favour ensuring equal access to the necessary resources for all children and teachers.
CEPIS is convinced that DEAP should focus strongly on increasing digital skills of the educators and push for the inclusion of digital competences for 21st century in the school curricula. This should be connected with some form of certification proving the achieved results of pupils and the same principle should be applied in lifelong learning with the aim of increasing the digital competence of the workforce. If remote/blended teaching and learning is to become the new norm in formal education (both for new pandemic wave and for remote learning for children not present due to illness or other reasons in school), then different curricula and teaching methodologies must be developed to suit these models, and proper pedagogical pre-service and in-service training must be a fundamental part of this change. The quality of education should be the key priority of both the European Commission and the Member States.
CEPIS response to the “White Paper on Artificial Intelligence – a European Approach”
In response to European Commission’s public consultation on the White Paper on AI, the Information Society group has produced a series of comments. CEPIS supports the actions and opinions outlined in the White Paper, while emphasising a strong need for the increase of the level of digital skills, the need to have strict regulatory frameworks for AI technologies, and the importance of pooling resources and expertise to ensure that Europe becomes a world leader in the field.
Informatics for All Coalition
CEPIS Computing in Schools group is a founding member of Informatics for All, a coalition that aims at getting academia, industry, government and society together to influence education policy in Europe towards the full recognition and establishment of Informatics as a foundational discipline in schools. The other founding members are ACM Europe Council and Informatics Europe.
In 2019, CEPIS joined the EU4Digital project. It is a project funded through the European Neighbourhood Instrument and coordinated by EY Baltic and the Latvian Information and Communications Technology Association (LIKTA). It is aimed at delivering the benefits of the Digital Single Market to the Eastern Partnership countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Republic of Moldova and Ukraine.
CEPIS’s role as a partner in the EU4Digital project focuses on providing expert guidance on methodology and reviewing the project’s deliverables in the Action point 6.1 – Define a common methodology in the EaP region for measuring and forecasting national digital skills gaps and 6.2 – to establish national coalitions for digital jobs and a competence framework for small businesses.
CEPIS position on the Regulation on cross-border access to electronic evidence in criminal matters
The European Commission’s draft proposal for a Regulation on cross-border access to electronic evidence in criminal matters includes enabling law enforcement authorities of a Member State (issuing state) to directly oblige providers established in another Member State (enforcing state) to disclose metadata and content data of their customers.
The CEPIS Legal and Security Issues expert group has drafted an open letter which strongly warns against this initiative. The proposal deprives states of the ability to protect the fundamental rights of their citizens. It undermines European data protection law and threatens to damage the existing international system of mutual legal assistance in criminal matters. Only two years after the deadline for implementing the European investigation order, it has not been clarified whether there are any gaps in cross-border criminal prosecution.