EFF and 110+ NGOs Challenge the UN’s Cybercrime Treaty

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The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and 110 other groups have united to convey to the United Nations that they are unhappy with a proposed treaty on cybercrime. Since May 2021, countries in the United Nations have been working together to create a set of rules for dealing with cybercrime. If these rules are accepted by all the countries in the UN, it would be the first time the UN would have a firm agreement on how to handle cyber issues.

This agreement could become a definitive set of rules worldwide, helping countries work together to stop and investigate cybercrime and punish those who commit cybercrimes. Together they created a joint statement, explaining their problems and concerns with the proposed system. But this treaty, as many see it, does not adequately protect human rights and may in fact impose on fundamental rights to privacy. What has been presented as a simple tool to combat cybercrime may in turn be, yet another, possible tool for excessive surveillance weakening cybersecurity and encryption and permitting governments to infringe upon free speech and other human rights.

What Are The Major Concerns and Issues?

In the past, laws regarding cybercrime have been used in ways that target specific individuals. The worry is that this new treaty might further enhance these issues. A conference is being held from January 29th to February 10th at the UN Headquarters in New York. EFF will be there making their voices heard, and combating the issues they have with proposed regulations.

The NGO groups are asking countries to be more specific about what counts as a cybercrime. They also want to ensure people such as security researchers, whistleblowers, activists, and journalists are protected and not punished for doing their jobs. They’re saying the treaty needs clear rules about human rights, data protection, and gender fairness. The group wants to limit how much power governments have in investigating and cooperating internationally, focusing only on the main cybercrimes.

With these organizations standing to voice their concerns on these new cybersecurity rules and regulations, we’re hoping to see an outcome that walks the fine line between protecting human rights of free speech and creating security for individuals in an increasingly technology dependent world.

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ohn "John D" Donovan is the dynamic Tech Editor of News Bytes, an authoritative source for the rapidly evolving world of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. Born in Silicon Valley, California, John's fascination with digital currencies took root during his graduate studies in Information Systems at the University of California, Berkeley.

Upon earning his master's degree, John delved into the frontier of cryptocurrency, drawn by its disruptive potential in the realm of finance.
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