Since Europe's largest IT systems in the realm of freedom, security and justice cannot afford to be brought to a halt due to COVID-19 and its derived travel restrictions, neither can their management and governance. Further to similar meetings held in April, "Business as usual" now involves eu-LISA governance meetings being held with video conferencing technology. On Tuesday 12th and Thursday 14th May respectively, eu-LISA managed the SIS and Eurodac Advisory Group meetings online with participants joining from all corners of Europe.
The Schengen information System (SIS) Advisory Group, that took place last Tuesday, saw presentations, updates and discussions focus on many aspects. Topics covered included a tour-de-table during which Member States present the SIS state of play in their respective countries, progress made on the implementation of the system Recast, AFIS phase 2, increasing capacity and the CS SIM. Testing activities as well as future SIS related projects planned for 2022-2024 were also on the agenda.
Today's Eurodac AG focused on, amongst others, usage statistics as well as details from individual Member States on open issues, the status of ITSM integration and feedback on operations. Eurodac related future tasks for 2022-2024 were also discussed as were the development levels reached on current projects and the migration of the Eurodac Interest Group from its current location to a different electronic platform.
A total of close to 100 Member State representatives, observers and Agency staff attended the meetings with but a few Member States having occasional connectivity issues. The next online Advisory Group meetings will be EES/ETIAS, ECRIS-TCN and Interoperability in the first half of June 2020.
Each online meeting presents the possibility to technically improve on the previous and the overall opportunity to integrate a new management method into the expanding landscape of running the JHA IT systems that help keep Europe's citizens safe.