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Law enforcement capabilities topic 1: Develop novel monitoring systems and miniaturised sensors that improve Law Enforcement Agencies' evidence- gathering abilities


Specific challenge:

Investigations on the activities of criminal organizations  usually require Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) to use electronic equipment for legal recording, retrieving and monitoring of criminal activities in a safe and unnoticed way, while keeping for both the sensors part and the monitoring station all the legal, integrity and chain-of-custody requirements that will enable the presentation of evidences obtained this way at the Courts of Justice.

Requirements for this equipment are very different from those offered by available commercial devices. Depending on the operation, the periods of time that these electronic devices have to work can range from days to months or in real time. Access to the device could be limited or impossible. Secure remote operation over radio channel (or other type of communication channel, including GSM networks)  should be possible. Other requirement may apply like small size for easy concealment, low power consumption for extended time life, robustness and self- protection in addition to strong authentication mechanisms for operators and protection of the communication channels.


The task is to develop a new type of sensors and equipments, monitoring station and their associated communication channel for LEA operation on the field according to their specification and subject to their validation at the end of the project taking into account the societal acceptance of the proposed solutions. Participation of LEAs and experts in fundamental rights in the definition of requirements and validation of results is essential, as only end-users are familiar with the challenges they frequently have to face in real operations within criminal investigations, and as experts on fundamental rights are informed on the impact of new technologies on individual lives (in particular privacy) and which rules should consequently be respected.

Proposals for this topic shall ensure that the developed technologies are such as to be upheld in Court.

Proposals addressing this topic may involve the use of classified background information (EU or national) or the production of security sensitive results. As such, certain project deliverables may require security classification. The final decision on the classification of projects is subject to the security evaluation.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between €3m and €5m would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected impact:

-          improved LEA capabilities to conduct investigations by using novel monitoring systems and miniaturised sensors;

-          increased crime prosecution capabilities:

-          shorter court cases due to the availability of more solid court proof evidence;

-          increased privacy and data protection;

-          for industry better understanding of modern operational LEA requirements, thus increasing their competitiveness.

The outcome of the proposal is expected to lead to development from Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) 6 or above; please see part G of the General Annexes.

Type of action: Innovation Actions