Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (665, 666)

James Lawless

Question:

665. Deputy James Lawless asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the communications he has had with the Garda Commissioner in relation to the decision to remove equipment from laptop computers used by senior officers manufactured by a company (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31706/19]

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James Lawless

Question:

666. Deputy James Lawless asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if all technology manufactured by a company (details supplied) will be removed from all equipment used by An Garda Síochána in the interests of national security; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31707/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 665 and 666 together.

As the Deputy will appreciate, in accordance with the Garda Síochána Act 2005, as amended, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for managing and controlling the administration and business of An Garda Síochána as well as for decisions in relation to the allocation and management of Garda resources, including in relation to ICT.  As Minister I have no direct role in these matters. 

I am informed by the Garda authorities that in general and for operational reasons, An Garda Síochána does not comment on the specifics of particular equipment in use in the organisation. 

However in relation to the matter raised by the Deputy, the Garda authorities have indicated that An Garda Síochána purchases the majority of its ICT equipment through Office of Government Procurement frameworks. The Garda authorities have further advised me that the only equipment in use in An Garda Síochána which has been manufactured by the company referred by the Deputy are branded modems supplied by mobile network operators.  I am further informed that these external modems are being phased out, as they are being replaced by laptops with an internal modem.