WASHINGTON, USA -- The secretary of legal affairs of the Organization of American States (OAS), Jean Michel Arrighi, on behalf of the secretary general of the institution, José Miguel Insulza, on Thursday opened a meeting of experts on the investigation of cyber crimes at the headquarters of the OAS in Washington DC, with a call to strengthen international legal cooperation, fortify links with the private sector, and collaborate with the citizens of the Americas to confront the complex transnational problem.
The eighth meeting of the working group on cyber crime of the meetings of ministers of justice or other ministers or attorneys general of the Americas (REMJA), brings together on Thursday and Friday national authorities in cyber crime and other experts to share and exchange experiences concerning advances and the most recent developments in their countries in the elaboration and enactment of legislation or other legal dispositions in the field, the establishment or growth of units or entities charged with directing and carrying out investigations and processing of cyber crimes.
The participants will also analyze the development and processing of cyber crimes and the concrete measures taken to facilitate and strengthen international cooperation in this area.
In his words of welcome, Arrighi highlighted the high costs caused by cyber crimes, through fraud and extortion, which compels governments to dedicate large amounts of resources to protect their institutions and citizens, among other costs. For that reason, said Arrighi, “international cooperation is fundamental for its prevention, detection, investigation and punishment.”
Arrighi listed some of the concrete actions the OAS has taken to act collectively in the face of the challenges of cyber crime, among them the holding of training workshops for the development of legislation and the strengthening of legal cooperation; assistance in the creation by various countries of special units to investigate and process these crimes. He also highlighted the importance of the consolidation of the Inter-American cooperation portal on cyber crime; progress in the comprehensive Inter-American strategy to combat threats to cyber security; the strengthening of cooperation with other international organizations; and cooperation with the private sector.
At the conclusion of his presentation, Arrighi expressed his conviction the meeting would be a success. “Given the quality of the presenters that we have here and of the experts taking part, I am sure that this meeting will be as productive as the previous editions have been and that valuable recommendations will emerge from it to continue strengthening cooperation in the fight against cyber crime and that we will therefore achieve better results in preventing, detecting, investigating, and punishing it.”
For his part, the chair of the working group on cyber crime, Rodolfo Orjales, from the United States, emphasized that “the fight against cyber crime does not rest,” and that the frequency of these crimes in the region continues to increase dramatically. “That is why the question that every one of you has to ask yourselves as members of this Organization is whether you have done everything possible to protect your citizens and your economies.”
Among the benefits of the meeting, said Orjales, is the opportunity to establish links with the authorities from other countries in the region that have already experienced the process of updating legal frameworks concerning cyber crime.