The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the prevention of and control of cybercrime and other offences involving electronic evidence, in line with international human rights and rule of law standards and good practices. That objective may be achieved by strengthening legislation and institutional capacities on cybercrime and electronic evidence in the region of the Southern Neighborhood in line with human rights and rule of law requirements.

Council of Europe – Cybercrime Approach

Governments increasingly consider cybercrime and cybersecurity matters of national security in particular in the light of terrorist use of the Internet, transnational organised crime in cyberspace and reports on attacks and computer intrusions by States or State-backed actors. In some countries, such threats may trigger repressive measures that in turn may threaten rule of law and human rights principles. It is necessary, therefore, to reconcile the positive obligation of governments to protect society and individuals against crime with rule of law, human rights and data protection requirements.

The approach of the Council of Europe on cybercrime addresses this challenge. It is built on the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime and related instruments, such as Data Protection Convention 108 and others. Joining the Budapest Convention entails membership in the Cybercrime Convention Committee (T-CY) and thus cooperation with currently 71 States. Furthermore, the Budapest Convention and the work of the T-CY is backed up by capacity building programmes.

Budapest Convention on Cybercrime

The Budapest Convention is open for accession by any country ready to implement its provisions and to engage in cooperation. From among the States of the Southern Neighbourhood region, Israel is a Party, Morocco and Tunisia have been invited to accede.

Expected Outcomes

  • Criminal law frameworks strengthened in line with the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime, including rule of law safeguards (Article 15)
  • Specialised police services and interagency as well public/private cooperation strengthened
  • Judicial training on cybercrime and electronic evidence mainstreamed
  • 24/7 points of contact are operational (at prosecution and/or police level) for more effective international cooperation on cybercrime and e-evidence
  • Strategic priorities on cybercrime and electronic evidence identified

Participating members & partners

  • Algeria
  • Jordan
  • Lebanon
  • Morocco
  • Tunisia