Information about Data in the Schengen Information System

The Schengen area (sometimes misspelled 'Shengen') is made up of the following countries besides Austria:

  • Belgium,
  • Czech Republic,
  • Denmark,
  • Estonia;
  • Finland,
  • France,
  • Germany,
  • Greece,
  • Hungary,
  • Italy,
  • Latvia,
  • Lithuania,
  • Luxembourg,
  • Malta,
  • the Netherlands,
  • Poland,
  • Portugal,
  • Slovenia,
  • Slowakia,
  • Sweden and
  • Spain

as well as, outside the European Union,

  • Iceland,
  • Norway
  • Liechtenstein and
  • Switzerland.

Abolishment of Border Controls between Schengen Countries

Legal entry into one Schengen country normally gives the freedom to travel through the entire Schengen area without further border controls. This means that border controls have to be established at the external border of the Schengen countries, replacing the controls of every member country. Valid decisions of authorities according to the Schengen treaties that bar a person from entry are therefore effective in the entire Schengen area. To implement this rule, a special system of data exchange was created: The Schengen Information System.

The Schengen Information System

The Austrian Federal Ministry of Interior [Bundesministerium für Inneres] operates the national part of the Schengen Information System (N.SIS) as a Data Application. In this Data Application, data of Data Subjects are processed that are relevant for Visas, entry permits [Einreiseerlaubnisse] and permanent residence permits [Niederlassungsbewilligungen], and border controls when entering the Schengen area. This includes residence bans [Aufenthaltsverbote] issued by Austria, warrants of arrest as well as information on stolen property (such as cars) and lost documents. The N.SIS receives through the SIS-Center in Strasbourg (C.SIS) additional data from the authorities of other Schengen countries which are relevant for entry into the Schengen area, e.g. an entry ban [Einreiseverbot] issued by the Belgian authorities.

Information about your Data in the N.SIS

If you encounter problems during visa application or when immigrating at an Austrian border and therefore want information on the data relating to you being processed in the N.SIS, please ask the Federal Ministry of Interior [Bundesministerium für Inneres], which operates the Austrian part of the Schengen information System.

An das
Bundesministerium für Inneres (BMI)
Bundeskriminalamt, SIRENE Österreich
Josef Holaubek Platz 1
1090 Wien

AUSTRIA/EUROPE

Telefax: +43 (0) 24 836 951 251

You can use this form to exercise your right to information. Please understand that all proceedings before Austrian authorities must be in German, even though this form is in German and English (this is laid down in Art. 8 of the Austrian Federal Constitutional Law).

Please note: To access your data according to sect. 26 of the Datenschutzgesetz 2000, you must, to prevent abuse, prove your identity in an appropriate manner to the agency that is reponsible according to data protection law, the Data Controller [Auftraggeber]. This means you should append a photocopy of an official identity document that carries your signature (e.g. a passport). The request for information must be made in writing on paper or per fax. Requests by telephone or e-mail may not be answered.

You can learn more about the right to information on data processed by the Austrian police authorities on the website of the Federal Ministry of Interior (Bundesministerium für Inneres) (German only).

The data protection authority only has the power to examine the rightfulness of the information given or the rightfulness of a refusal to give information according to sect. 26 DSG 2000.

The data protection authority itself does not grant access to data stored in the Schengen information system.

Entry and Immigration in General

More information on how to travel to Austria can be found at help.gv.at