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About 24/7 Points of contact

An important provision of the Convention on Cybercrime is Article 35, that is, the creation of points of contact available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to facilitate international cooperation:

Article 35 – 24/7 Network

  1    Each Party shall designate a point of contact available on a twenty-four hour, seven-day-a-week basis, in order to ensure the provision of immediate assistance for the purpose of investigations or proceedings concerning criminal offences related to computer systems and data, or for the collection of evidence in electronic form of a criminal offence. Such assistance shall include facilitating, or, if permitted by its domestic law and practice, directly carrying out the following measures:

     a the provision of technical advice;
     b the preservation of data pursuant to Articles 29 and 30;
     c the collection of evidence, the provision of legal information, and locating of suspects.

2   a A Party’s point of contact shall have the capacity to carry out communications with the point of contact of another Party on an expedited basis.

     b If the point of contact designated by a Party is not part of that Party’s authority or authorities responsible for international mutual assistance or extradition, the point of contact shall ensure that it is able to co-ordinate with such authority or authorities on an expedited basis.

3    Each Party shall ensure that trained and equipped personnel are available, in order to facilitate the operation of the network.

This Article is very much based on the experience of the G8 Sub-group on High-tech Crime that established a network of such contact points already in 1997 and that currently comprises more than 50 members.

G8 Communique 1997

Recommendations for tracing network communications

Best practices for network security

Best practices for law enforcement interaction with victim-companies

G8 principles for protecting critical information infrastructure

G8 principles on the availability of public data essential to protecting public safety

G8 principles on transborder access to stored computer data

G8 data preservation checklists

In order to avoid a proliferation of networks it has been agreed that contact points of the G8 and those established under the Convention on Cybercrime be merged into a single Directory of Contact Points that will be maintained by G8 Sub-group on High-tech Crime and the Council of Europe.

This Directory is restricted to the use of law enforcement purposes.

For further information please contact:

Alexander Seger
Economic Crime Division
Directorate General of Human Rights and Legal Affairs
Council of Europe, Strasbourg, France
Tel: +33-3-9021-4506
Fax: +33-3-9021-5650
Email: alexander.seger@coe.int