A curated list of challenges, programs, funding opportunities, academic research and startups that have caught our eye.
Detection of illicit trade
Support the purchase and maintenance of equipment and IT tools to strengthen beneficiaries’ operational and technical capacity to detect smuggled and counterfeited goods, including cigarettes and tobacco, imported into the Union with the intention of evading Value Added Tax, customs duties and/or excise taxes. Specialised training to enable staff to operate these tools must be included as part of the action.
Digital forensic hardware
Support the purchase and maintenance of digital forensic equipment and software, mobile forensic tools, and computer forensic collaborative systems used to prevent and fight against irregularities (and fraudulent irregularities in particular), fraud, and corruption detrimental to the financial interests of the Union. Cross-border cooperation enabling the exchange of information and best practices, in particular at operational level, is strongly encouraged. Projects may also include updates of existing software systems and associated training. Specialised training to enable staff to operate these tools must be included as part of the action.
Investigation and surveillance equipment and methods
Support for the purchase and maintenance of investigation and surveillance equipment and methods used by beneficiaries to prevent and fight against irregularities, fraud, and corruption detrimental to the financial interests of the Union.
The purchase of adapted transport equipment, IT hardware, IT software, and audiovisual equipment may be included, provided an applicant clearly demonstrates that the purchase helps to achieve the prevention and combat of fraud, corruption and any other illegal activities affecting the financial interests of the Union.
Specialised training to enable staff to operate these tools must be planned as part of the action.
Specialised training sessions
Professionals, in particular staff from customs authorities and other law-enforcement bodies, are better able to protect the financial interests of the Union through:
(i) the acquisition of new skills;
(ii) knowledge of specialised methodologies and techniques;
(iii) an increased awareness of fraud-risk indicators at the Union level. More opportunities to develop and implement anti-fraud strategies at the Union level are expected.
These results will be measured by: the number of events and number of participants; the origin and professional background of the participants; and the level of participants’ overall satisfaction with the events.
Conferences, workshops and seminars
Organising conferences, workshops and seminars and creating networks and structural platforms between Member States, candidate countries, other third countries, institutions of the Union and international organisations in order to:
- facilitate the exchange of information, experience and best practices, including in the field of IT anti-fraud systems and data analysis;
- create networks and improve coordination between Member States, candidate countries, other third countries, institutions of the Union and international organisations;
- facilitate multidisciplinary cooperation and awareness-raising between anti-fraud practitioners (in particular customs authorities and other law-enforcement bodies) and academics on protecting the financial interests of the Union, including support to the Association for European Criminal Law and the Association for the Protection of EU Financial Interests;
- raise the awareness of the judiciary and other legal professionals of this matter.
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