The 24th plenary of the Cybercrime Convention Committee (T-CY), representing the Parties to the Budapest Convention, on 28 May 2021 approved the draft “2nd Additional Protocol to the Convention on Cybercrime on Enhanced Co-operation and Disclosure of Electronic Evidence”.
“Criminals have stepped up their activities, exploiting changes to the ways in which people live and work, at a moment of hardship and real vulnerability. The devices, victims and evidence of these crimes are often spread across multiple jurisdictions”, said Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe Bjorn Berge in his opening remarks. And: “This Protocol will facilitate more effective investigations and ensure that the rule of law reaches deeper into cyberspace than ever before.”
The Protocol will provide for innovative tools to obtain the disclosure of electronic evidence, including through direct cooperation with service providers in other Parties and more efficient ways of public-to-public cooperation. Two articles permit instant cooperation in emergency situations where lives are at risk. The draft Protocol also promotes joint investigations by Parties. These tools are accompanied by a set of safeguards to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including in particular a detailed article on the protection of personal data.