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[infowar.de] Computer Weekly startet Cybercrime-Kampagne in UK
Ein Zeitschrift, die Gesetzesverschärfungen fordert und dazu eine eigene
Kampagne startet - ist das guter journalistischer Stil? Begründet wird
es mit Befürchtungen der National High-Tech Crime Unit, dass britische
Gesetze nicht auf dem neuesten Stand bei Computerkriminalität sind.
UK must lock down the law to stop the hackers
by Computer Weekly reporters
Thursday 28 February 2002
Lock down the law: This week Computer Weekly launches a campaign to
get the Government to protect businesses by updating archaic UK
Leading IT user organisations and legal experts have backed Computer
Weekly's Lock Down the Law campaign to review and update laws designed
to protect businesses from hacking.
Computer Weekly is launching a campaign on cybercrime law following
concerns raised by the National High-Tech Crime Unit that the current
law - which was devised before widespread use of the Internet - makes
it difficult to prosecute hackers that damage businesses' Internet
The National High-Tech Crime Unit is particularly concerned that
denial of service attacks, where a Web server is brought down by a
flood of messages, may remain legal under UK law.
According to government sources, the Home Office has no plans to
change the law during this parliament or even the next.
While the law remains in its current state, businesses could be
exposed to attacks from malicious hackers (also known as crackers),
young "script kiddies" and protest hackers.
A spokesman for the IBM Computer User Association said, "Unless the
law can respond and take the appropriate measures against the
perpetrators of denial of service attacks, these things will
The Infrastructure Forum, whose IT manager members have responsibility
for a combined IT budget of £25bn, was one of the first to back the
Computer Weekly campaign. "One question that we have to answer is, if
we are going to change the law, what are we going to change it to?"
said a spokesman.
"The answer to this will come only after much discussion and a study
of how other countries have legislated against denial of service
attacks and similar crimes."
IT legal experts have already started work behind the scenes to get
the cybercrime law changed. E-business standards body E.Centre is
working with IT lobby group Eurim.
E.Centre's Legal Advisory Group plans to work on a review of the law
that will agree a definition of e-crime and review cybercrime laws to
see what gaps exist.
A spokesman for the Information Advisory Assurance Council, which
represents legal staff involved with IT, said UK law needs to be
brought in line with existing European legislation. "The Computer
Misuse Act 1990 should be revised in line with the Council of Europe
Cybercrime Convention," he said. "Computer crimes tend to be treated
more leniently than equivalent crimes in the physical world. This
discrepancy needs to be removed."
Roger Loosley, chairman of the Technology Lawyers Consortium, welcomed
the Lockdown the Law campaign. "The Computer Misuse Act is over 10
years old and only covers the unauthorised access to and modification
of computer material," he said.
"Although it is difficult to keep the law up to date with the fast
pace of technological developments, governments should at least try to
keep the law in sight of current practices. Those who deliberately
cause significant damage to the commercial interests of others should
be guilty of an offence."
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