MPs call for Computer Misuse Act changes

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The head of the All Party Parliamentary Internet Group (Apig) has called for amendments to the Computer Misuse Act.

The move would bring UK law in line with the European Convention on Cybercrime and increase the tariff for hacking offences from six months to two years.

"The All Party Group was hoping that an MP would have picked this up as part of the Private Members' allocation for bills but sadly no-one did," said Derek Wyatt, who put forward the suggested amendments.

"So it seemed sensible given the work we undertook last year to at least place on record what we think the Bill should look like in the hope that the Government will come back to it after the general election," he continued.

The changes also ask for the implementation of a specific Denial of Service (DoS) offence.

"DoS attacks have fast become a lucrative weapon in the hackers' armoury," said Mark Sunner, CTO at security company Messagelabs which has come out in support of the amendment. "They now have the ability to blackmail and extort victims for substantial sums. As the current provision in the Computer Misuse Act surrounding DoS attacks is ambiguous, companies are left wide open to attack."

In January SC reported a Scottish man had been arrested for his part in a distributed denial of service attack (Ddos) attack on a number of websites.

The motion to move the bill is scheduled to take place on April 5 this year.

www.messagelabs.com
www.apig.org.uk

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