Feeds

Europe mulls anti-ID theft law

But doesn't expect it to be useful

Website security in corporate America

The European Commission is considering new legislation against identity theft. The proposal is contained in a just-published policy on EU-wide plans to fight cybercrime.

The European Commission's policy on fighting cybercrime in Europe is the product of many years of consultation and focuses on greater co-operation between European police forces.

Though the commission said that it did not believe that new legislation would be useful at this stage in stopping the fast growth of cybercrime, it said it will consider anti-ID theft laws later this year.

"No general legislation on the fight against cyber crime can be expected to be effective at this moment," said a commission statement. "However, targeted legislative actions may also prove to be appropriate or needed in specific areas. As an example, the commission will consider an initiative regarding European legislation against identity theft in 2007. Legislative action could also include developing a regulation on the responsibility of different actors in the relevant sector."

Overall, the commission said its cybercrime fighting policies would depend on improved co-operation and communication between law enforcement forces across Europe.

"The main feature of this policy instrument is a proactive policy in reinforcing the structures for operational law enforcement cooperation," said the commission statement. "The commission will launch a reflection on how this cooperation can be strengthened and improved."

In a move which could prove controversial, the commission said its new policy included "actions to improve exchange of information" between law enforcement agencies. Attempts to share increasing amounts of information between police forces in Europe have met with opposition.

Europe's privacy watchdog the European Data Protection Supervisor recently warned of his "grave concern" that data sharing plans was a "lowest common denominator approach that would hinder the fundamental rights of EU citizens".

Earlier this week, the European Parliament voted to support the reinstatement of data protection principles into a European plan to share data across police forces.

"The policy instrument includes actions to improve exchange of information and best practices, initiatives to improve training and awareness-raising within law enforcement authorities," said the commission's statement on its plan.

The commission also wants to create new public-private projects designed to fight crime. This could also raise privacy problems because state bodies in Europe are often reluctant to share personal information with the private sector.

Copyright © 2007, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.