This article asserts that the automated processing of information, such as via large-scale information systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (AFSJ), alters the ‘value’ of information from a means of assistance to a key decisional asset. Information in its different forms, whether paper-based or digital, has always been fundamental to decision-making conduct. Concretely, the premise holds that decisions shall be based on correct, full, and adequate knowledge and reasoning. Technological innovation has, however, magnified information capacities and significance. The article in that respect maintains that the ‘decisional value’ of automatically-processed information consequently also alters the nature of the respective decision-making – from a conventional type where the agent exercises discretion to a ‘semi-automated’ conduct in which automation inhibits the agent’s decision-making capacity. The recognition of such transformation is necessary for the law to keep up with the technological progress and safeguard rights of individuals who are subjects of such semi-automated decisions.
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