Pressemitteilungen von Andrej Hunko

Secret alerts are increasing rapidly. Why?

“I view the growing number of Schengen Information System secret alerts with concern: compared with 2016, the issuing of such alerts has increased from around 96,000 (as of: 1 January 2017) to almost 130,000 (as of: 1 January 2018). The reason for secret alerts being issued for an additional 34,000 people must be made clear”, demanded Andrej Hunko, European policy spokesman for the Left Party parliamentary group in the German Bundestag.

Article 36 of the Council Decision on the Schengen Information System (SIS) permits alerts to be issued for “discreet checks”. They can be carried out by any EU member state in order to obtain information on the movements and contacts of the persons under surveillance. If the individuals in question are intercepted within the Schengen area, the authority that issued the alert is notified. The place, time and grounds for the check, itinerary, accompanying persons and items carried are recorded.

Andrej Hunko continued:

“The increase in alerts cannot be explained by the threat of Islamist terrorism alone. Europol reports a four-digit number of confirmed foreign fighters, yet the increase of SIS alerts in 2017 is several times that. This could mean that families and contacts of these individuals are also being secretly monitored. It is also possible that the measure is being used on a large scale for combatting other criminal activity.

Under Article 36(3), intelligence services are also permitted to issue a secret alert, which is probably the reason for the recent increase. I suspect that the new platform of Schengen state intelligence services in The Hague is behind this. However, all further details regarding the ‘Counter Terrorism Group’ platform are confidential.

Now, the investigative options are being expanded upon. There are plans to introduce a category for the alerts entitled ‘terrorist-related activity’, which is currently undefined. This shows a fundamental problem in EU security cooperation: operational tools are being introduced, although there is no legal foundation for them.”

Alerts on persons under Article 36 of the SIS Il Council Decision (as of 1 March 2018):

Country Article 36(2) SIS II Council Decision Article 36(3) SIS II Council Decision
Austria 741 241
Belgium 1,868 47
Iceland 1  
Germany 2,664 1,621
Spain 12,305 186
France 75,917 2,702
Greece   56
Italy 3,267 3,901
Denmark 330 153
Luxemburg 6 21
Netherlands 712 435
Norway 41 39
Portugal 37 68
Sweden 880 450
Finland 133 106
Czech Republic 897 75
Estonia 4 8
Latvia 14 11
Lithuania 347 10
Hungary 805 1
Malta 27 1
Poland 2,953 89
Slovenia 18  
Slovakia 189 94
United Kingdom 15,753 1,238
Switzerland 148 75
Bulgaria 328 56
Romania 2,582 1
Liechtenstein 2  
Croatia 1 4


Download the answer to the Minor Interpellation entitled “Secret alerts within the scope of the Schengen Information System” (in German): https://andrej-hunko.de/start/download/dokumente/1126-verdeckte-fahndungen-mithilfe-des-schengener-informationssystems

Andrej Hunko, MdB 2018