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Authorities and experts in the fight against cybercrime from the Member States of the OAS will meet at the Organization’s Headquarters, in Washington D.C., on January 21 and 22, 2010, with the objective of evaluating the progress achieved and defining new concrete cooperation actions to prevent, investigate and punish crimes committed through information systems or against them.

At this meeting, which will be the sixth held during the last few years in fulfillment of the mandates of the highest authorities in this field, the Ministers of Justice, other Ministers and Attorneys General of the Americas, the Working Group on Cyber-Crime will analyze the problems that have been detected, the progress achieved in international cooperation in this area, and will formulate recommendations on new actions to be executed. The recommendations that derive from this meeting will be considered by the Meeting of those Ministers of Justice, other Ministers and Attorneys General of the Americas, known by its acronym “REMJA”, which will take place in Brasilia, Brazil, from February 24 to 26, 2010.

Cybercrimes are a product of the information and technology era. Due to their nature, in many aspects, they cannot be treated in the same manner as traditional crimes. They are in essence international crimes. In the face of these crimes, the vulnerability of a State may ultimately affect any other State with which it is connected. For this reason, isolated actions taken by some States are not sufficient. Cooperation between States is essential. This presents tremendous challenges: legal, technological, specialization, training, and international assistance and cooperation.

As a result of the recommendations of the REMJA Working Group on Cyber-Crime, during the last few years, among others, twelve regional training workshops have been held for the development of legislation and other tools for the investigation and prosecution of these crimes; an Internet Portal has been created, which includes a component for the exchange of information between national authorities; and cooperation has been strengthened with other international organizations with activities in this area, such as the Council of Europe.

Albert C. Rees, Jr., Chair of the Working Group, has expressed that “In support of the Member States, the Working Group will strive to provide timely and relevant training, enhanced online resources, opportunities for officials from member states to learn from each other, and means for improved legal cooperation to combat the growing use of computers and the Internet by criminals.”

The meeting will be opened by the Secretary General of the OAS, José Miguel Insulza, on Thursday, January 21, at 9:30 a.m., and will offer the opportunity for exchanges among the authorities and representatives from the private sector that will participate at this event.

Additional information on the meeting and the activities of the REMJA Working Group on Cyber-Crime can be found at:


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