The European Union will create legislation to help Member States curb cybercriminals and better assist victims of online payment fraud.
This was agreed by the European Parliament and the Council following the Commission’s proposal to strengthen the rules to combat fraud and counterfeiting of non-monetary means of payment, such as bank cards, checks, mobile payments and virtual currencies.
The Commissioner of Internal Affairs, Migration and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos, explained that “we are building a safer Europe for our citizens, both offline and on the Internet and we fulfill this commitment. steal our citizens through online fraud and make sure our citizens are better protected. “
For his part, Security Commissioner Julian King said: “Strengthening deterrence is crucial to combat cybercrime: malicious cybernetic actors must know that they have serious consequences. to potential cybercriminals. “
Fraud and counterfeiting of non-monetary means of payment is an important source of income for organized crime, which often allows other criminal activities such as terrorism, drug trafficking and trafficking in human beings.
The new rules will boost the ability of Member States to deter, prosecute and punish cybercriminals. Non-monetary transactions made with any type of payment instrument, whether physical such as bank cards or virtual cards such as mobile payments, are included in the scope of crimes.
The theft and misappropriation of credentials, as well as the additional sale and distribution of those credentials will also be penalized. The new rules establish minimum sanctions ranging from 1 to 5 years. This will prevent criminals from choosing to jurisdiction with more lenient sanctions, and will also facilitate cooperation between national authorities by clarifying what activities are considered criminal offenses.
Greater protection for victims
Victims of non-cash fraud will now have better access to information, advice and support to limit the consequences of identity theft. In addition, the dedicated national contact points and the involvement of Europol will improve the exchange of information and cross-border cooperation.
Another novelty is that financial institutions and other private entities will report relevant crimes to law enforcement authorities.
The Directive will now have been formally adopted by the European Parliament and the Council. Once it enters into force, Member States will have two years to transpose the rules into national legislation.