US signs multilateral treaty to combat cybercrime

The U.S. on Thursday signed the Second Additional Protocol to the Budapest Convention, a multilateral treaty aimed to protect citizens from cybercrime and hold cybercriminals accountable.

Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard Downing signed the treaty at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, France. 

According to the Justice Department, the U.S. will join more than 60 countries that have pledged to combat cybercrime, with more expected to join in the coming years.

“It is our collective vision that every country that is serious about fighting cybercrime and that provides for the protection of human rights should become party to the Budapest Convention,” Downing said in a speech to members of the Council of Europe. 

The treaty was designed to help law enforcement authorities obtain electronic evidence related to service providers, subscriber information and traffic data associated with global criminal activity, the Justice Department said. 

The treaty’s signing was a culmination of nearly four years of negotiations involving U.S. delegations, including representatives from the Justice and State departments.

Lately, the U.S. has joined forces with foreign cybersecurity agencies in its quest to combat cybercrime both domestically and globally, particularly since the start of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

U.S. federal agencies and a number of international partners have recently issued numerous joint advisories warning businesses and critical infrastructure of increasing cyber threats, including potential Russian cyberattacks. 

Experts have warned that the upcoming midterms in the U.S. could be a prime target for Russian disinformation campaigns and attacks on election systems.

Tags Budapest Convention cybersecurity
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