International Relations News

 BUDAPEST CONVENTION

Written by Talent KAS

Related Topic in KAS Prelims Syllabus:

International Relations [Paper-I]: International Treaties and Forums, their structure and mandate

Science and Technology [Paper-II]: Cyber Security concerns, National Cyber Crime Policy

News

India maintained its status as a non-member of the Europe-led Budapest Convention, but it voted in favour of a Russian-led UN resolution to set up a separate convention.

Russian Resolution

  • The Russian proposal entitled “Countering the use of information and communications technologies for criminal purposes” was passed in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
  • The proposal creates a committee to convene in August 2020 in New York to establish a new treaty through which nation-states can coordinate and share data to prevent cybercrime.
  • India voted in favour of the resolution.
  • The Russian-led campaign for a cybercrime convention in the UN has been framed in direct opposition to a separate treaty, namely the Council of Europe’s (CoE) Cybercrime Convention, which is also known as the Budapest Convention.

About Budapest Convention

  • Convention on Cybercrime adopted in Budapest is the first and one of the most important multilateral treaties addressing the issue of internet and computer crimes.
  • It was open for signature in 2001 and came into force in 2004.
  • It serves as a guideline for any country developing comprehensive national legislation against Cybercrime and as a framework for international cooperation between State Parties to this treaty.
  • The Budapest Convention is supplemented by a Protocol on Xenophobia and Racism committed through computer systems.
  • It is the sole legally binding multilateral treaty that coordinates cybercrime investigations between nation-states and criminalises certain cybercrime conduct.

Why India is not joining the Convention?

  • In 2018, then Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh proposed joining the Budapest Convention, but it was opposed by the Intelligence Bureau (IB).
  • IB argued that data sharing with foreign law enforcement agencies infringes on national sovereignty.
  • India has also previously argued that it will not sign onto the treaty since it was drafted without its participation.
  • Russia and China have also questioned national sovereignty issues at the Budapest Convention.
[Source: Indian Express, coe.int]

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