Legislation - Legal framework

Surfing the Internet safely is a right

Freedom of speech, information, communication and development of one’s personality in general, as well as the protection of privacy are among the most fundamental rights of citizens, well-established in Art. 5A and 9A of the Constitution respectively. Restrictions on those could only be applied in cases of national security, of fighting crime or while protecting rights and interests of the public. The validation of these rights do not cease to exist while surfing online, as cyberspace is nothing less but an ideal world where safety of a user is of utmost importance. 

Since 2008 significant steps have been taken towards the modernization of the Greek legal framework as far as the under-aged internet users are concerned. The urge for sheltering the minors’ rights was so intense that lead to the conclusion of an agreement by the European Council for the protection of children against sexual exploitation and abuse, which was ratified and implemented by the Greek State in Act 3727/2008.

Lawmakers’ measures and adjustments

It is of great importance to verify to what extend Greek penal laws are applied in order to combat crime on the Internet. The answer to the above is given by lawmakers in Art. 5 of P.C. (Penal Code) where it is categorically stated: Hellenic penal laws are implemented to all acts committed in domestic territories, even by outlanders, as well as to any act described as a misdemeanor or capital offence by them and that was committed abroad by an inlander, if this act is considered to be punishable according to the laws of the country which was performed in (Art. 6 P.C).

In cases of crimes committed on the Internet, as a crime scene can be considered either the location where a web page was visited from, which practically means in any country with Internet access, or the location where an Internet Service Provider (ISP) hosts the web page in question. In case it originates abroad and immediate intervention of the Greek prosecuting authorities is impossible, this will be dealt mostly through cooperation between SafeLine and the relevant foreign hotlines. If necessary, unreserved cooperation between the Greek  prosecuting authorities and their foreign counterparts (e.g. Europol and Interpol) is guaranteed in order for cyber crime to be prevented and repressed. 

 

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