Proposed French Reform Allows Police to Spy on Suspects Via Smartphone Camera


Smartphones are almost as ubiquitous, perhaps even more so, than people themselves in some areas.

silhouette photography of man
Silhouette photography of man. Photo by Chris Yang

And, if you’re French authorities, that makes them the perfect conduit for “spying” or investigating a subject according to a proposed French legal reform.

If that sounds terrifying to you, you’re not the only person; in fact, many people in France and elsewhere find the whole notion pretty abhorrent. 

But don’t worry, the French government protests, such permission would only apply to a limited number of cases per annum according to a report from NDTV quoting France’s Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti.

The proposal states that such an action would have to be approved by a judge (as if that’s a huge impediment for law enforcement) and it couldn’t extend for longer than six months. Arguing that this reform would “save lives,” opponents point out the inherently dystopian and techno-totalitarian nature of it all. Then are those who argue that smartphones have always been a kind of Trojan horse in this area for the authorities to use to infiltrate our private lives. Given the general tenor of the proposed French law, that latter party may not be far from the mark. 

Interestingly, professions such as doctors, members of parliament, and judges themselves would not be subject to the provisions of this law. This is perhaps to limit political intrigue, among other things, but it doesn’t look terribly enlightened when basted under the general headline of “let us spy on you using your smartphone for reasons.”  

Any thoughts you might have on this proposed reform in France are welcome in the comments.

We have some other headlines you might like to read at this link right here.


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Kehl is our staff photography news writer since 2017 and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here and follow him on Insta.

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