Switzerland: Complaint against the “Justitia.Swiss” project for electronic justice

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The non-profit Digital Society of Switzerland, together with an unnamed IT company, has filed a complaint in court against plans to advance an ambitious large-scale IT project in the judiciary without a legal basis. The organization announced on Tuesday. The proceedings are about the planned platform “Justitia.Swiss”, through which all legal transactions in the country are to be carried out electronically in the future. A tender for the platform should now be prevented or at least postponed, at least until the necessary laws apply.

“Justitia.Swiss” has been promoted for years and, according to the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, has all important parts of the justice system on its side. The goal is not just paperless dishes, but a completely new work culture, the newspaper quotes. According to this, an electronic file management system and a special electronic file that can be processed by different actors at the same time are planned. Although there is already some electronic legal communication in Switzerland, it has only been used to a very limited extent so far. In the future, however, access to the right on paper should only be available to citizens; everyone else will then have to communicate digitally.

The digital society has already criticized during the legislative process that the goals are still too unclear and the implementation is not appropriate. For example, neither end-to-end encryption nor an open source license is provided for this critical infrastructure. Although the necessary laws are only now being drawn up and should come into force in 2025 at the earliest, the development of a “Justitia 4.0” platform has already been put out to tender. According to this, 200,000 files should be stored in it in just two years, without any legal basis. This “brazen approach” undermine the legislative process and curtail democratic rights, criticizes the organization. The Federal Administrative Court must now decide on the complaint.

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