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
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.
- 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.