Bart Custers in Trouw on new cybercrime Act
In March 2019 a new Computer Crime Act took effect in the Netherlands. As a result, Dutch police now have extensive powers to tackle cybercrime. Innocent citizens could be adversely affected if these new powers are not used with restraint, Bart Custers (Head of Research at eLaw - Center for Law and Digital Technologies) writes in Dutch newspaper Trouw.
As of 1 March, in certain circumstances the police can hack your computer and install spyware on it. The police can then view the files of suspects and observe and listen for example by switching on microphones and cameras from a distance or by registering keystrokes. This constitutes a substantial violation of the right to privacy, if among other things personal messages can then be read. The use of such means may be justified, just like the use of telephone tapping, but this must be in proportion. The added value for crime detection, however, is not entirely clear. To prevent risks, the police should use restraint when applying these powers. Only when the added value for collecting evidence and arresting suspects is clear, will this outweigh the risks of making errors.
The interview (in Dutch) can be viewed on the website of Trouw.