European Commissioner for Security Julian King speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017. European security commissioner, Julian King, unveiled new measures on Wednesday to protect against lone-wolf attacks following a spate of killings in Europe's capitals. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

EU unveils measures to tackle low-tech attacks

October 18, 2017 - 9:10 am

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union on Wednesday unveiled new measures to help counter deadly low-tech attacks following a spate of killings in major cities by extremists driving vehicles into crowds of people.

The European Commission, which proposes and ensures compliance with EU laws, said the measures aim to better protect major gatherings like concerts or sports events.

They include additional funding and training to improve cooperation between police and private security at malls or concerts.

"Terrorists don't stand still. They change and adapt their methods. We need to be ready to adapt our response," EU Security Commissioner Julian King said.

The response, he said, is meant to "build our resilience, to limit terrorist access to the means they use to carry out attacks, and to strengthen international cooperation."

Brussels also wants to review rules for the sale of bomb-making material to make it harder for extremists to obtain the ingredients, and help investigators tackle encrypted phone or computer data. The Commission didn't explain exactly how this would be done, though King said EU countries with more experience in tackling encryption should share the know-how.

To help protect public spaces and raise awareness about potential dangers at events, the Commission has earmarked a total of 118.5 million euros ($140 million) in funding for this year and 2018.

It also hopes to boost European police cooperation with Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey, notably to secure the transfer of personal data to combat serious crime.

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