The Hellenic Authority for Communication Security and Privacy (ADAE) has been established according to article 19 par. 2 of the Hellenic Constitution. According to article 1 of its founding law, 3115/2003, its purpose is to protect the free correspondence or communication in any possible way.
ADAE has, inter alia, the competence
- to issue regulations regarding the assurance of confidentiality of communications,
- to perform audits on communications network/service providers, postal service providers, public entities as well the Hellenic National Intelligence Service,
- to hold hearings of the aforementioned entities,
- to investigate relevant complaints from members of the public and
- to collect relevant information using special investigative powers. It should be noted that Law 3115/2003 stipulates that, when performing an audit which involves files related to national security, the personal attendance of the President of ADAE is required.
In addition to the above, ADAE is the independent administrative authority responsible to monitor the implementation of all legislation relevant to the lawful interception of communications and, for this purpose, is authorized to receive all lawful interception orders issued by the judicial authorities. As regards this competence, it must be clarified that ADAE’s role is limited to monitoring that the procedural terms and conditions set out by national legislation on lawful interception are met. The Authority is not allowed to assess the judgment of competent judicial authorities. Only the latter can decide on the necessity of issuing a lawful interception order.
The Division for the Assurance of Privacy of Postal Services of the Authority is responsible for drafting regulations and safeguarding the privacy of mail services. It also introduces and puts into effect scheduled and emergency auditing procedures, ex officio or upon complaint, of installations, equipments, archives, of civil services, as well as of private corporations that engage in postal/mail services. It takes care of/concerns of hearings of administrations, legal representatives, or any other person, whom it considers capable of contributing to the fulfillment of ADAE mission. It also suggests the seizure of means of confidentiality violation as it perceives them or the destruction of information or evidence obtained by means of communication privacy violation. It issues legislative acts, which are published in the Greek Government Gazette, related to the security of confidentiality in general. In cases of confidentiality violation, it introduces imposition of penalties.
ADAE currently runs a project within the Partnership Agreement for the Development Framework) 2014-2020, which constitutes the main strategic plan for growth in Greece with the contribution of significant resources originating from the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) of the European Union. In the past ADAE had successfully finished another project within the Partnership Agreement 2007-2013.
The Hellenic Authority for Communication Security and Privacy (ADAE) is currently involved and participates in the Erasmus + Programme, in the project NewPost.