Leaked EU Files Suggest Multiple EU Countries Support End-to-end Encryption Ban

A leaked document obtained by WIRED reveals that Spain, Ireland and other European countries have advocated for banning encryption for millions of people within the European Union. The document, a survey of EU member states’ views on encryption regulation, shows strong support among EU countries for proposals to scan private messages for illegal content, particularly related to child sexual abuse material (CSAM). The proposed law would require tech companies to scan their platforms, including users’ private messages, to find illegal material.

The leaked document represents the opinions of EU member states on encryption regulation. Of the 20 EU countries included in the document, most expressed support for some form of scanning encrypted messages, with Spain taking the most extreme position, advocating for legislative prevention of EU-based service providers from implementing end-to-end encryption.

While some countries, such as Finland, Estonia, and Germany, demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the implications of encryption regulation on data security, national security, privacy rights, and innovation, others, like Spain, Cyprus, and Hungary, are seen as seeking to undermine encryption for broader access by law enforcement.

The leaked document highlights the ongoing debate within the EU about the balance between privacy and security, particularly concerning encryption and its impact on law enforcement and individual rights.