Seconded National Experts in the EU Internet Referral Unit (IRU) within the European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC)



This selection procedure is intended to establish a reserve list of successful candidates (indicative number is 3).

Europol is a well-established and recognized organisation that became an EU agency in 2010. It is constantly looking for creative, self-reliant and energetic employees, who are up to the challenges involved in international crime-fighting, to work in its state-of-the-art headquarters in The Hague, the Netherlands.

It employs more than 1,000 personnel, including around 130 analysts, to identify and track the most dangerous criminal and terrorist networks in Europe. Our people come from a variety of professional backgrounds such us law enforcement, finance, legal, information technologies, human resources, communication, etc.

Working in close-knit teams, our specialists use their expertise and our cutting-edge technology to support investigations into serious organised crime and terrorism within and outside the EU.

Europol has:
• disrupted many criminal and terrorist networks
• contributed to the arrest of thousands of dangerous criminals
• helped recover millions of euros of crime proceeds
• helped hundreds of victims of trafficking and abuse, including children

The working environment at Europol has a lot to offer. It is:
• highly collaborative
• intellectually stimulating
• multilingual
• multidisciplinary
• international

Prospective candidates should be prepared to work in a dynamic and fast-moving environment that requires a high level of flexibility, and should have the ability to perform well within a team.

Equal opportunity
Europol is an equal opportunities employer and encourages applications without distinction on the basis of gender, colour, racial, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, nationality, age, sexual orientation or gender identity.

We aim to create and maintain a healthy and attractive work environment that supports women and men in their career planning and in achieving a healthy work-life balance.

Employment at Europol is open to nationals of EU Member States. There is no nationality quota system in operation, but Europol is striving for a broad range of nationalities in order to keep a well-balanced geographical distribution among its staff members. Applications from female candidates are particularly encouraged.

If you would like to be part of a supportive team that allows you to make a strong contribution, and if you have seen a position that appeals to you, we'd like to hear from you.


The Operations Directorate deals with the core business of Europol, improving the effectiveness and cooperation of the competent authorities in the Member States in preventing and combating serious and organised crime, as well as terrorism affecting the Member States. This requires close cooperation with the Liaison Bureaux at Europol and via them with the Operational Teams in the Member States.

Europol delivers a number of products and services to national law enforcement agencies to support them in their fight against international serious and organised crime, as well as terrorism.

Under Europol’s organisational structure, the Operations Directorate hosts five distinct Departments: Front Office, European Serious Organised Crime Centre, European Cyber Crime Centre, European Counter Terrorism Centre, Horizontal Operational Services.

The European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC) was established in January 2016 at Europol and is responsible for facilitating Counter Terrorism cooperation and Counter Terrorism information exchange among the Counter Terrorism authorities as well as to provide operational analysis. The centre includes the Internet Referral Unit (IRU) dealing with online Jihadist investigation. The emphasis of the centre is to build further on the already established tools and CT networks of Europol. It aims to enhance the CT capabilities and improve the information exchange among CT authorities, to bring the cross border cooperation in the CT field to a new level. The current focus of the ECTC is on Foreign Fighters which is the most significant threat at the moment. The ECTC is structured in such a way that it can adapt in a flexible way to new developments. 

The successful candidates will have to carry out the following main duties:
• Deliver operational support for internet investigations to the MS and 3rd parties with operational agreement;
• Support on-going large operations and investigations;
• Liaise with the relevant competent authorities in the Member States and third parties;
• Provide specialised knowledge and experience to EU IRU operational activities;
• Process large volume of data;
• Support the content identification and the referral process within EU IRU;
• Based on Member States information, prepare reports on possible opportunities for Europol and the Member States to work together on specific intelligence and information;
• Undergo specific training;
• Establish close contacts with the Member States and Third Parties’ Liaison Officers to encourage and support operational activities in the field of responsibility of the EU IRU team.

The SNE will be involved in the handling of sensitive data, for which an appropriate level of security clearance is requested.



• Be a member of a competent authority in one of the Member States of the European Union in the meaning of Article 2 point (a) of the Europol Regulation and enjoy full rights as a citizen of a Member State;
• Produce evidence of a thorough knowledge of one Community language and a satisfactory knowledge of a second language;
• Possess at least 3 years of professional experience in the field of law enforcement relevant to the duties to be carried out during the secondment.


a. Professional experience:
• At least 3 years of experience in investigations, preferably at international level;
• Experience in internet investigative techniques;
• Experience in drafting intelligence reports and operational products.
• Experience in monitoring open sources and social media to identify content aimed at promoting terrorism and violent extremism (propaganda) material.

b. Professional knowledge:
• Sound knowledge of Open Source Intelligence methods, tools and techniques;
• Knowledge of information resources related to violent extremism and terrorism.
• Knowledge of Arabic, Russian or Turkish language.

c. Technical skills and competencies:
• Knowledge of online databases and information retrieval systems;
• Computer literacy: Microsoft Office applications (MS Word, Excel,
• PowerPoint, Outlook, Visio) and internet;
• Excellent communication skills in English, both verbally and in writing;
• Excellent organisational skills including the ability to establish clear priorities, exercise initiative and work independently;
• Good presentation skills;
• Ability to enhance current automation workflows by scripting (Python, Shell scripting in both Windows and Linux OS, PowerShell, VMWare Orchestrator).
• Computer forensics skills;
• Maltego proficient user;
• System administration.

d. General competencies:
• Very good communication skills in English, both orally and in writing;
• Ability to draft clear and concise documents on complex matters for various audiences.
Analysing & problem solving:
• Excellent analytical and critical thinking skills;
• Competent user of Microsoft Office applications (MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook) and the internet;
• Keen eye for detail with the ability to maintain standards of accuracy under pressure of tight deadlines.
Delivering quality and results:
• High degree of commitment and flexibility.
Prioritising and organising:
• Good administrative and organisational skills.
• Ability to work well under pressure, both independently and in a team.
Living diversity:
• Ability to work effectively in an international and multi-cultural environment.


Application process

Candidates endorsed by the national competent authorities are required to complete the application form available on Europol’s website in English and submit the original application form together with 2 copies via their Europol National Unit, and, if necessary, the Liaison Bureau to the Human Resources Unit – Recruitment and Selection – at Europol. The application form must be accompanied by a letter from the sending authority to the Director of Europol expressing willingness to second the candidate.

Applications must be sent to Europol by the date of the deadline indicated on the vacancy notice at the latest. The stamp on the envelop serves as proof of the sending date. Applications received after the deadline cannot be accepted.

Selection Procedure

A Selection Committee chaired by the Head of the relevant Department or a senior representative and composed by a representative of the respective group as well as the Recruitment and Selection team determines candidates’ suitability by assessing their skills, experience and qualifications in relation to the notice of secondment and will make an initial selection from the applications received.

For the initial selection, the operational contributions from the competent service to the project to which the expert will be seconded will be taken into account. The Selection Committee then conducts at least a structured telephone interview with the shortlisted candidates in English in order to evaluate their language skills, validate their experience and assess whether they possess the key skills required.

On the basis of the initial assessment of the application and the outcome of the telephone interview the Selection Committee makes a recommendation for the Director to endorse. If no recommendation can be made following the assessment of the application form and the telephone interview a further interview can be arranged, if necessary face-to-face at Europol.

The Secondment is finally authorised by the Director and effected by an exchange of letters between the Director and the seconding authority, specifying the details of the Secondment as described in the MB Decision. Detailed rules regarding the secondment of national experts to Europol are described in the Decision of the Director on the selection procedure for Seconded National Experts of 22 February 2011.

Detailed information on the selection procedure, including the appeal procedure is available in the Europol Recruitment Guidelines, which can be found on Europol’s website.


The SNE shall remain in the service of the sending authority throughout the period of secondment and shall continue to be paid by that employer. The sending authority shall also be responsible for all social rights, particularly social security and pension entitlements.

During the period of secondment the SNE is entitled to a daily subsistence allowance paid by the agency, and may also be eligible for a monthly allowance depending on the distance from the place of origin. If the SNE receives any allowance from other sources similar to the subsistence allowance paid by Europol, this amount shall be deducted.


Detailed rules regarding the secondment of national experts to Europol are described in the Management Board Decision laying down the rules on the secondment of National Experts of 12 May 2016.



Deadline for application: 24 November 2017, 23:59 CET
Duration of the secondment 1 year with a possible extension up to 3 years in total
Starting date of employment: to be determined

Please refer to the Europol Recruitment Guidelines available on Europol’s website for further details on the application process and the selection procedure.

For further details on the application process please call +31 (0) 70 353 1583 or +31 (0) 70 353 1298. You may also contact us by email.



24 November 2017

Contract type

Seconded National Expert


Operations Directorate

Reports to

Head of IRU