FEMM Committee Chat Control Amendment Discussion (24 May 2023)

Good Morning,

Following the revelations in Wired yesterday showing that a majority of our member states wish to break encryption and some not only to prevent and prosecute Child Sexual Abuse material. 

We must remember that once encryption is broken, it is broken for all. We must remember once we give up our rights to privacy it’s gone for all of us.

I’m glad to be here in the FEMM committee this morning, and welcome this opportunity for this discussion on the CSAM regulation.

Thank you to the Rapporteur and shadows for their diligent work

There are lots of issues with the Commission’s proposal, in particular when it comes to privacy, but also to efficacy and victim support.

We have heard it from our own complementary impact assessment,

We have heard it from the council’s legal service,

We have heard it national parliaments,

We have heard it from civil society,

and now, we have heard it from members of this house.

I think it says a lot that MEPs across the political spectrum, from the EPP to the Left have expressed these concerns, and tabled amendments to address them. In particular when those concerns clash with the opinion of their group’s rapporteur or shadow.

MEP Karen Melchior gives a speech to the FEMM Committee

I’ve given a speech to the FEMM Committee, regarding the planned CSAM regulation.

I’ve already made my concerns clear:

There is a lack of focus on education and prevention, there is not enough protection and support for victims, there are  unacceptable infringements to citizens right to privacy, in particular through breaking end-to-end encryption and there is the wider question of efficacy and false positives.

We know that client-side scanning could be easily bypassed by abusers, scanning for unknown content and grooming would likely pick up teenagers nudes, as well as innocent conversations, and conversations between LGBT+ teens, we know that these reports will overwhelm the police leaving them with less time to address real abuse, and we know that the social stigma which comes from being caught sending nudes primarily affects women and girls

We all have different views within parliament, within our political groups, and even within our political parties.

But it’s important that we don’t end up in a logic of total opposition where we ignore any opinions different to ours.

What is vital, is that we work together, and listen to each other to find common solutions, because:

If we pass legislation that later gets struck down by the European Court of Justice, we won’t be helping kids.

If we pass legislation that mandates easily-bypassed yet intrusive scanning, we won’t be helping kids.

If we pass legislation that floods law enforcement with false positives, we won’t be helping kids.

So let’s work together, listen to each other and compromise together.


If there are technical concerns with my amendments to ensure privacy and security for our LGBTI community and our children regarding the scope of the FEMM committee then this must also apply to colleagues who wish to include an amendment to maintain the interim derogation if “as from August 2024, if there is no entry into force of the proposed regulation, the regime in place should be the one of the interim derogation, until such adoption is envisaged.”

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