EU Interior Ministers want to set up an anti-cybercrime platform
At its session in Brussels on Thursday 27th November, the Justice and Home Affairs Council announced an enhanced campaign against cybercrime. The Council says in its decision that an EU-wide platform should be set up in the short term, "aimed at reporting criminal acts committed" on the internet. In the medium term, they also call for exchanges on the mechanisms for blocking and/or closing down internet sites in Member States containing child pornography. Providers are to be encouraged to effect the appropriate closures. A further suggestion is that "the European platform could be a tool for establishing a common blacklist".
EU Member States are asked, in the long term, to facilitate "remote searches" enabling investigation teams to have rapid access to information. The document does not say whether this means secret online searches of IT systems, as in Germany. The proposed package of measures includes using "cyberpatrols" and "resorting to joint investigation and enquiry teams" to combat internet criminality. Ursula von der Leyen, Germany's Minister of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, has just prompted a lively debate in Germany by calling for a national ban on web sites containing child pornography. Eco, the German internet industry association, considers such a measure inappropriate, at least if implemented on a purely national level.