A dangerous precedent: how the EU AI Act fails migrants and people on the move


The statement has been written collectively by the #ProtectNotSurveil coalition following the European Parliament’s final vote on the EU AI Act. The whole statement is available on the Access Now web page

The EU Artificial Intelligence Act (AI Act), adopted in March 2024, is celebrated globally but falls short in addressing migration concerns. It establishes separate rules for AI use by law enforcement, migration, and security authorities, creating loopholes and promoting risky surveillance. The Act fails to prohibit harmful AI in migration, excludes critical systems from regulation, and delays compliance for major databases until 2030. It also overlooks the export of banned AI technologies. The Act's exemptions for law enforcement and national security undermine transparency and accountability, enabling unchecked surveillance.

Looking ahead, advocacy efforts of civil society gathered in the #ProtectNotSurveil coalition aim to protect migrants and marginalized groups from AI-related harms, emphasizing documentation of abuses and resistance against expanding surveillance frameworks.

The #ProtectNotSurveil coalition is:

Access Now, European Digital Rights (EDRi), Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice, Refugee Law Lab, AlgorithmWatch, Amnesty International, Border Violence Monitoring Network (BVMN), Digitalcourage, EuroMed Rights, European Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ECNL), European Network Against Racism (ENAR), Homo Digitalis, Privacy International, Statewatch, Dr Derya Ozkul, Dr. Jan Tobias, and  Dr Niovi Vavoula

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