Feeds

Yes, maybe we should keep hackers in the clink for YEARS, mulls EU

Watch out black hats, they just might throw away the key

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

The EU is pushing through a directive calling for harsher criminal penalties against convicted hackers.

The proposed rules (PDF) set a baseline sentence of two years' imprisonment in cases where hacks are carried out with the intent to cause serious harm, involve circumventing security measures and where no attempt is made to notify website owners or other vulnerable parties about a security breach.

A draft of the paperwork was rubber-stamped last week by the EU Parliament's Civil Liberties Committee ahead of a European Parliament vote on the plans, which is expected to take place in July.

Under the new directive, sentences would be increased to a starting point of five years' imprisonment for cases involving attacks against critical infrastructure systems, such as power plants and transport networks.

Stricter sentences will also apply to offences linked to criminal organisations, or attacks which cause severe damage. Botnet herders and affiliated malware authors will face sentences starting at three years' chokey, assuming the directive is accepted and incorporated into national laws. The directive allows flexibility in imposing more lenient sentences in less severe cases.

The rules cover "intentionally producing and selling tools used to commit" hacking offences while offering defences to cover penetration testing. There's also some protections for whistleblowers.

Commentary on the directive can be found in a blog post by Sophos here. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New twist as rogue antivirus enters death throes
That's not the website you're looking for
ISIS terror fanatics invade Diaspora after Twitter blockade
Nothing we can do to stop them, says decentralized network
prev story

Whitepapers

A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.