The Federal Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information

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The German Federal Police

The Federal Police performs a wide range of law enforcement tasks and is endowed with extensive powers to collect and process data.

Airport baggage check and a federal police officer is pictured with his back
Source: Adobe Stock

According to the Act on the Federal Police (BPolG) and other legislation, the Federal Police performs a wide range of law enforcement tasks. Unlike the police of the federal states, the Federal Police’s duty is basically limited to a specific field of tasks.

These tasks include the protection of the border of the federal territory, the prevention of threats to the security of railway stations and at airports, the protection against attacks on the security of air transport. Within its area of competence relating to police work and to the prevention of threats, the Federal Police is also responsible for law enforcement.

In order to fulfil these tasks, the Federal Police has extensive data collection and data processing powers in accordance with the BPolG.

The BPolG is currently being revised. With a new BPolG, the Federal Police could gain new far-reaching powers.

The Federal Police may carry out storage and queries in the following interconnected systems:

  • Police Information System, INPOL
  • Schengen Information System, SIS II
  • Counter-terrorism database, ATD
  • Database on right-wing extremism, RED
  • Europol Information System, EIS, see EUROPOL

The following systems are additionally used:

  • Visa Information System, VIS
  • Passenger Name Record, PNR
  • Entry Exit System, EES
  • European travel information and authorisation system, ETIAS
  • European Criminal Records Information System, ECRIS
  • Central Register of Foreigners, AZR
  • Querying vehicle data in FADA (vehicle data), FAER (register of driver fitness), ZFZR (central vehicle register)
  • Population register file, EWO

The list is not exhaustive. Only the relevant systems are mentioned.

In addition, the Federal Police also use its own systems

  • Secured border search database, GGFB
  • Case processing system @rtus-Bund

The list is not exhaustive. Only the relevant systems are mentioned.

The Federal Police also participates in the cooperation platforms of the federal and state governments

  • Joint Counter-Terrorism Centre, GTAZ
  • Joint Centre for Countering Extremism and Terrorism, GETZ
  • Joint Centre for Illegal Migration Analysis and Policy, GASIM

Joint centres of transnational cooperation

Along the German border, there are various police cooperation centres in which the Federal Police, the police of the neighbouring country (France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Poland, Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland), customs and the respective German federal state cooperate on the specific border police issues. This shall expedite processes and improve cooperation at all levels.

Data subjects’ rights

A data subject has the right to information pursuant to  Section 57 of the Federal Data Protection Act (BDSG), the right to rectification, erasure or restriction of processing pursuant to Section 58 of the BDSG and the right to lodge a complaint with the Federal Commissioner pursuant to Section 60 of the BDSG.

In the event of a complete or partial refusal of access by the Federal Police, the data subject may exercise his or her right via my office, the Federal Commissioner, in accordance with Section 57 (7) of the BDSG. This is also possible in the case of a refusal to rectify, delete or restrict the processing (Section 58 (7) BDSG).


Requests for information to the Federal Police must be addressed to:

Die Datenschutzbeauftragte
Heinrich-Mann-Allee 103
14473 Potsdam

Requests for information to the Federal Commissioner
must be addressed to: 

Der Bundesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz und die Informationsfreiheit
Graurheindorfer Str. 153
53117 Bonn
Or also to:

Information from INPOL:

Due to the task of border protection, the Federal Police carries out border controls. In this context, the police information system of the federal and state governments (INPOL) is also consulted. The Federal Police must act when entries are made, however, these entries may have been made by the Federal Police itself or by the BKA or by state police forces. However, according to Section 57 of the BPolG, the Federal Police can only provide information about the entries made under its own responsibility.

If you as a data subject would like to receive comprehensive information about possible entries about your person from INPOL, please send your request to the BKA. According to Section 84 of the Act on the Bundeskriminalamt and the Cooperation between the Federation and the Länder in Criminal Police Matters (BKAG), the BKA is competent for information from the INPOL interconnected system.

D-65173 Wiesbaden