WEBCAST JAN 23 – The UN Cybercrime Convention Negotiations: Implications for Human Rights and Internet Openness

ISOC LIVEOn Tuesday January 23, 2024, at 11:00-12:30 EST (16:00-17:30 UTC), the Columbia Institute for Tele-Information, as part of its Global Digital Governance series, presents a webinar ‘The UN Cybercrime Convention Negotiations: Implications for Human Rights and Internet Openness‘.

In December 2019, the UN General Assembly approved on a 79-60 vote (with 33 abstentions) a resolution calling for the negotiation of a comprehensive international convention on cybercrime. Sponsored by Russia with support from China, Iran and other like-minded countries, the resolution established an Ad Hoc Committee (AHC) charged with elaborating a text. The AHC held six sessions in 2022 and 2023 and will have a concluding session from January 29 to February 9, 2024 in New York. The draft treaty will then be taken up by the UN General Assembly in September.

The treaty’s ardent proponents maintain that existing intergovernmental mechanisms like the 2001 Budapest Convention on Cybercrime are inadequate, and that a stronger and more broadly scoped UN mechanism is needed to tackle the evolving landscape of cybercrime. The treaty’s critics counter that the draft text is far too expansive (and indeed goes beyond cybercrime), criminalizes an arbitrary laundry list of speech and behavior, undermines multiple civil liberties, unduly constrains technology providers and users, and promotes extraterritorial surveillance and mutual law enforcement procedures that could extend the reach of repressive policing. Other governments have taken various positions along the continuum between these polar stances.

Convened a week before the final AHC negotiation, this webinar assembles a panel of leading analysts and participants in the cybercrime treaty debate in order to illuminate the state of play. They will assess the major issues with the draft text, the international coalitions and bargaining dynamics that are shaping the process, and the possible scenarios for a negotiated outcome in the months ahead. As always, the panelists’ conversation will be followed by an open dialogue among all webinar participants.

It is simulcast live under the auspices of the Internet Society New York Chapter (ISOC-NY).

Eli Noam, Director, Columbia Institute for Tele-Information, Columbia Business School.

Nick Ashton-Hart, Senior Director for Digital Economy Policy, APCO Worldwide.
Katitza Rodriguez, Global Privacy Policy Director, Electronic Frontiers Foundation
Tatiana Tropina, Assistant Professor in cybersecurity governance, Institute of Security and Global Affairs, Leiden University

William J. Drake, Director of International Studies, Columbia Institute for Tele-Information

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