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The New Crime of Cyber Extortion and Other Cybercrimes Contained in the Italian Cybersecurity Parliamentary Bill

posted 1 month ago

Parliamentary bill no. 1717, containing provisions to bolster national cybersecurity and cybercrimes, was submitted to the Chamber of Deputies on Feb. 16. The legislative process continued on Feb. 29 with the additional steps.

The law against the pressure of the cyber threat in Italy.

The measure is aimed at responding to the increasing offensiveness of attacks carried out by telematic and cyber means by acting on two fronts, that of national cybersecurity – by the resilience of public administrations against cyber threats – and that of criminal law – through the revision of cybercrimes.

The new offence of cyber extortion.

The new offence of cyber extortion aims to protect the increasing number of victims of this serious and frequent aggression: blackmail carried out through the threat or implementation of cyberattacks. The new norm is punished with imprisonment from six to twelve years and a fine from five thousand to ten thousand euros. The offence is also included in the area of corporate criminal liability, with the provision of a fine of three hundred to eight hundred quotas.

Penalty changes to computer crimes.

Interventions on other computer crimes already in force mainly concern the tightening of sanctions – also in the area of the corporate criminal liability – through the increase of the penalties and the introduction of the prohibition of balancing mitigating and aggravating circumstances. Then there is the novelty of the use of threat as an aggravating circumstance for the crimes of abusive access to a computer system and damaging public information, data and programs or those of public interest, thus expanding the aggravating circumstance that until now contemplated only the use of violence, as well as the provision of the aggravating circumstance integrated with the realization of certain events resulting from the crime and, in particular, removal, reproduction, transmission, inaccessibility to the owner of the data, information or programs contained in the computer system.

To mitigate this arrangement there is the inclusion of the mitigating circumstance of the slight fact and the mitigating circumstance of cooperation in favor of the person who aids the authorities in gathering evidence or recovering the proceeds of crimes or the instrumentalities used in the commission of these crimes and works to prevent the criminal activity from being carried to further consequences.

News about the investigation.

Here are numerous interventions, and only a few are mentioned.

Wiretapping.

Here we have the wiretapping regulations provided for organized crime offenses that establish the possibility of ordering wiretapping operations for 40 days that can be extended by an additional 20 in the presence of sufficient evidence of the commission of the most offensive cybercrimes.

Collaboration.

To balance the punishment treatment for cybercrimes and the new investigative tools the law extends the discipline of collaborators of justice and witnesses of justice to the cybercrime’s offenders by special protection measures and prison benefits.

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