FC: Council of Europe drafts secret "Second Protocol"

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Wed Feb 20 2002 - 08:47:41 PST

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       Beefed-Up Global Surveillance?
       By Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
       2:00 a.m. Feb. 20, 2002 PST
       WASHINGTON -- An addition to an international treaty could permit
       police to cooperate more closely on intercepting and decrypting the
       communications of suspected terrorists.
       The Council of Europe, which includes nearly all European nations, is
       meeting this week to prepare additions to a controversial "cybercrime"
       treaty that would cover decoding terrorist messages. The United
       States, Canada and Japan are non-voting members of the council.
       Peter Csonka, the head of the Council of Europe's economic crime
       division, said when the drafting process for the so-called Second
       Protocol is complete, the document will address "how to identify, how
       to filter, and how to trace communications between terrorists."
       Details are scarce, and the Council of Europe has repeatedly refused
       to elaborate. Csonka would not confirm or deny whether the Second
       Protocol will advance limits on encryption technology, coordinate
       code-breaking efforts among member nations, or increase electronic
       surveillance performed against people linked to terrorism.
       This week's closed-door meeting, reportedly taking place at the
       council's headquarters in Strasbourg, France, includes representatives
       from the U.S. Justice Department, which was one of the most
       enthusiastic backers of the original treaty.
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