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The Government of Côte d’Ivoire, by Note Verbale of the Embassy of Côte d’Ivoire in France dated 18 February 2022, submitted a request for accession to the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime.
A project to develop a national cybersecurity strategy is underway.
On June 19, 2013, Côte d'Ivoire adopted Law No. 2013-451 [FR] on the fight against cybercrime (the "Cybercrime Law of 2013").
State of cybercrime legislation
Law No. 2013-451 [FR] (Cybercrime Law of 2013) defines and punishes offenses specific to information and communication technologies (ICT), infringements of intellectual property and unlawful acts on electronic communication networks. This law also sets out the responsibilities of online service providers and adapts existing offenses to ICT. Finally, it specifies the criminal procedure in matters of cybercrime and details elements of criminal procedure for digital evidence that can also be used for legal purposes in classic criminal cases. Before the adoption of this law, most of the legislation concerning criminal acts related to ICTs was based on the provisions of the 1981 criminal code.
In September 2021, the Council of Ministers adopted a bill to amend Articles 17, 33, 58, 60, 62 and 66 of Law No. 2013-451. These amendments would increase the penal sentences for certain offences under the act.
In addition, to take into account the constant evolution of technologies and uses in the field of ICT, specific offenses committed by means of new information and communication technologies have been introduced:
- In the new Penal Code reformed by law n°2019-574 [FR] of June 26, 2019 on the Penal Code (in particular in chapter 11, articles 365 to 377)
- In the rules of criminal procedure reformed by law no. 2018-975 of December 27, 2018 on the Code of Criminal Procedure [FR].
Regarding the relationship between the different texts, it should be noted that certain provisions of the Cybercrime Act of 2013 must be read in the light of the Penal Code (articles 28, 31 and 32 on attempts and complicity in particular).
[sdJ1] Regarding the relationship between the different texts, it should be noted that certain provisions of the Cybercrime Act of 2013 must be read in the light of the Penal Code (articles 28, 31 and 32 on attempts and complicity in particular).[sdJ2]
[sdJ1]Côte d'Ivoire - Official Government Portal - The Government (www.gouv.ci) point 4.
[sdJ2]All info coming from the joint report GLACY+ OCWAR-C 15/07/21 (Evaluation de la loi ivoirienne sur la cybercriminalité au regard de la Convention de Budapest, de la Convention de Malabo et de la Directive de la CEDEAO)
Cybercrime Law No. 2013-451 [FR]
Articles 4 to 13 cover offenses specific to ICTs, which are in particular access to, maintenance of, obstruction of, introduction into an information system, illegal interception of data, alteration, production or the deletion of data.
Articles 15 to 18 concern offenses to child pornography.
Offenses relating to infringements of intellectual property and related rights committed through an information system are set out in Article 33.
Articles 58 to 66 sanction the dissemination of racist “material” and insult or xenophobic, or even the denial or justification of acts constituting genocide or crimes against humanity through an information system.
Chapter VIII (“Criminal procedure in cybercrime”) of the Cybercrime Law No. 2013-451 [FR] enacts the following measures:
- Preservation of data (articles 72 and 73),
- Searches and seizures of information systems (articles 71, 75 and 76) as well as the communication of data (articles 74),
- Real-time data collection (article 77),
- Refusal to comply with the request of the prosecutor or the investigating judge (article 78).
The Code of Criminal Procedure [FR] (Law No. 2018-975) includes some provisions relating to the protection of human rights and freedoms in accordance with international texts.
Title I "Rights, freedoms, duties" of the Constitution [FR] of the Third Republic of Côte d'Ivoire promulgated on November 8, 2016 guarantees the fundamental rights of citizens: the right to life (article 3), access to a fair trial and respect for the rights of the defence (article 6), freedom of thought and freedom of expression (article 19), freedom of association (article 20), promotion, development and protection of women (articles 32 and 35 to 37). In addition, Côte d'Ivoire has ratified various international conventions, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1990).
In accordance with its Constitution [FR], Côte d'Ivoire has set up the National Human Rights Commission (CNDHCI), an independent administrative authority established by Law No. 2012-1132 of December 13 2012 [FR].
It is important also to highlight the following:
- Book II of the Penal Code [FR] provides for the exercise of public action and instruction.
- Article 54 of the Constitution [FR] of Côte d'Ivoire provides: “The President of the Republic is the Head of State. He embodies national unity. He sees to the respect of the Constitution. It ensures the continuity of the State. He is the guarantor of national independence, territorial integrity and respect for international commitments”.
- Article 139 of the Constitution [FR] provides: “The judiciary is independent. The President of the Republic is the guarantor of the independence of the judiciary. He is assisted by the Superior Council of the Judiciary. “
- In addition, the presumption of innocence is provided for in article 7 of the Constitution [FR] and article 2 of the Code of Criminal Procedure [FR]. The term used reinforces this: implicated, prosecuted, guilt.
In addition, Orientation of the Information Society Law No.2017-803 [FR] guarantees free access for all, without discrimination, to electronic communications networks open to the public.
Related laws and regulations
The Constitution [FR] of the Third Republic of Côte d'Ivoire.
Penal Code [FR]
Code of Criminal Procedure [FR] (Law No. 2018-975)
Orientation of the Information Society Law No.2017-803 [FR]
Protection of Personal Data Law No. 2013-450 [FR]
Copyright Law No. 2016-555 [FR]
In terms of governance, the Ministry of the Interior and Security has a specialised department, the IT and Technological Traces Department (DITT), which operates in 2 areas:
- Cybercrime investigation, provided by the Platform for the Fight against Cybercrime (PLCC) resulting from a partnership agreement signed in 2011, updated in January 2014 and July 2017 between the General Directorate of the National Police (DGPN) and the ARTCI. This service has a website which indicates its missions and the various services that make it up (investigation, police cooperation, communication and statistics). This online reporting application is only intended to report suspicious IDs or profiles for alert and informational purposes. It is therefore necessary, in addition, to lodge a complaint with a police department.
- Technical support to the services in charge of traditional criminal code offences, to collect and make technological traces intelligible, provided by the Digital Forensic Science Laboratory (LCN) of the DITT's Technological Traces Sub-Directorate (SDTT).
The fight against cybercrime is also a concern of the Ministry of Defence.
In addition to these instruments, an online platform for reporting illegal content targeting or featuring children has been established in collaboration with the Internet Watch Foundation. This platform allows online reporting to remove abusive content in close collaboration with the largest online service providers (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) and the police and child protection services.
Moreover, the Advisory Committee for Digital Confidence (CCCN), created by decision n°2015-0074 of September 2, 2015 of the Regulatory Council of the Telecommunications/ICT Regulatory Authority, is responsible for examining issues the security of networks and information systems, the fight against cybercrime and electronic transactions.
Decree No. 2020-128 of January 29, 2020 on the creation, organisation and operation of the computer security incident monitoring and response center presents CI-CERT as the national cybersecurity focal point, in order to lay the foundations clear governance of cybersecurity in Côte d'Ivoire.
Protection of Personal Data Law No. 2013-450 formally designates ARTCI (L'Autorité de Régulation des Télécommunications/TIC de Côte d’Ivoire) as the Personal Data Protection Authority. This authority has the status of an independent administrative authority and has regulatory, control and sanction powers. Its main missions cover (i) regulation of the telecommunications/ICT sector, (ii) regulation of the postal sector, (iii) management of electronic transactions, network and IS security and (iv) data protection. of a personal nature.
ARTCI brings together several advisory committees, including the Personal Data Advisory Committee (CCDCP) created by Decision No. 2015-0060 [FR] of April 27, 2015 of the ARTCI Regulatory Board. This committee is responsible for examining the technical, legal and ethical aspects of the processing of personal data.
Competent authorities and channels
Côte d'Ivoire has several agreements to facilitate international cooperation:
- Convention A/P1/7/92 on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters between ECOWAS Member States of July 29, 1992
- A judicial cooperation agreement with Mali
- A judicial cooperation agreement with Tunisia
- An Extradition Convention with Morocco
- The Criminal Police Cooperation Agreement between ECOWAS Member States (SIPAO/WAPIS
In addition, Côte d'Ivoire has signed bilateral cooperation agreements in the field of cybersecurity and cyber-defence, in particular with France and Egypt. Côte d'Ivoire is also a member of the Global Forum of Computer Security Incident Response Teams (FIRST) and other international organisations in the field of cybersecurity.
There are no rules concerning mutual assistance regarding access to stored computer data, cross-border access to stored computer data with consent or when publicly available, assistance mutual assistance regarding the real-time collection of traffic data and mutual assistance regarding the interception of content data.
Sources and links
JurisTIC-Côte d'Ivoire | Textes Nationaux
Côte d'Ivoire - Portail officiel du Gouvernement - Le Gouvernement (www.gouv.ci)
Autorité de Régulation des Télécommunications/TIC de Côte d'Ivoire - L'Autorité (artci.ci)
Plateforme de Lutte Contre la Cybercriminalité PLCC
These profiles do not necessarily reflect official positions of the States covered or of the Council of Europe.
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- Cybercrime website
- Template: Mutual Legal Assistance Request for subscriber information (Art. 31 Budapest Convention). English and bilingual versions available.
- Template: Data Preservation Request (Articles 29 and 30 Budapest Convention). English and bilingual versions available.