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EU Countries Closer To Mandatory Minimum Sentence Cap For Hacking

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the fixing-the-guidelines dept.

EU 154

angry tapir writes "Hackers would face up to two years or more in prison no matter where they live in the European Union under a new draft law approved by the European Parliament's civil liberties committee. The proposed rule would prevent E.U. countries from capping sentences for any type of hacking at less than two years. Meanwhile the maximum sentence possible for cyberattacks against 'critical infrastructure,' such as power plants, transport networks and government networks would be at least five years in jail. The draft directive, which updates rules that have been in place since 2005, would also introduce a maximum penalty of at least three years' imprisonment for creating botnets."

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Nice concept (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934067)

When we talk about debt its every country for himself. When we talk about corruption and murder is every country for himself. Talk about hacking ... OMG now we are a union of countries?

Re:Nice concept (3, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#43934175)

Clue: Hackers don't have to live in the same country where they hack (in fact they often don't...)

Murderers, corrupt politicians wrecking the economy? Not so much.

Re:Nice concept (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934255)

Corruption and related business via the internet can also be done from anyplace.

Re:Nice concept (1)

flyneye (84093) | about a year ago | (#43934371)

Modern conveniences.

Re:Nice concept (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934259)

wrecking the economy? Not so much.

Yeah, because the US company Goldman Sachs totally didn't wreck the EU economy and business sitting in one country are totally not doing business in other countries. They also totally don't hide in tax havens and never would do evil tricks to prevent the cops from catching them.

Re:Nice concept (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#43934375)

Clue: Europe is a union. What the summary is talking about is like people committing crimes in another state in the USA.

Last I heard, the USA has laws to prevent people hopping state borders and going "neener, neener" from the other side.

Similarly, these laws won't affect people who hack from tax havens, etc.

Re:Nice concept (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934793)

Clue: My fetid cock has located your rancid asshole and is preparing for a cum-covered feces fiesta.

Re:Nice concept (1)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | about a year ago | (#43935343)

Yum, Gyros with cream topping, Yum!

Re:Nice concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934379)

Corrupt politicians wrecking the economy are quite often in different countries. Especially if the EU is involved.

Re:Nice concept (5, Interesting)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about a year ago | (#43934203)

Can we impose the same minimum cap on sentencing for banking god knows they do far more damage in a day than hackers will in their entire careers.

Re:Nice concept (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#43934317)

Can we impose the same minimum cap on sentencing for banking god knows they do far more damage in a day than hackers will in their entire careers.

it's a minimum cap on what what the maximum is.
what they use as sentences is still all the same and can be less.. that's how I understood capping the minimum.

where I live, Finland, there's a big bunch of crimes that usually will fetch you with just a fine even though there's at least a 6 month sentence possible from them. this is pretty much because that allows the cops to do home invasions if they suspect said crime...

Re:Nice concept (4, Funny)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43934747)

Yes. All you have to do is to vote for politicians that will implement it.

Researchers! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934301)

Researchers across the world are feeling the pressure!

Re:Nice concept (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#43934409)

It's still every country for herself. Every country passes its own legislation, every country passes different sentences; this would simply mandate that in every country, it must be at least possible to sentence a criminal specializing in the given field for this prescribed period of time (henceforth labeled a as X). It's not even remotely close to a sentencing guideline or anything like that. Logically, this is to prevent the situation in which some country says "X is too much, we'll cap it at one year tops" so that certain kinds of people wouldn't relocate there fot their "work". :-) Whether this will have any effect is debatable, though.

(Don't tell me you don't have individual state laws in the US.)

Re:Nice concept (1)

Deekin_Scalesinger (755062) | about a year ago | (#43934529)

Sure we do. In my ancestral home of Pennsylvania, we got a lot of them. Can't buy booze unless you purchase it from the Gov't, Certain stores only sell six packs, others only cases of beer. Our sales tax (VAT to you guys I believe) is convoluted at best - books are taxed, magazines aren't. Soap is taxed, paper towels are not. Etc, etc...

But some laws are pretty universal in the US (with some interpretation of course), mostly to do with criminal acts that harm others. No one is getting off "easy" for rape in one state as opposed to another. Maybe the EU is thinking along the "harming others" category, which disruptive hacking certainly can do.

Re:Nice concept (1)

westlake (615356) | about a year ago | (#43934445)

When we talk about debt its every country for himself. When we talk about corruption and murder is every country for himself. Talk about hacking ... OMG now we are a union of countries?

It always surprises the geek when one of his own is expected to do hard time.

Crimes of violence are almost always isolated events and are prosecuted locally --- as they have been for millennia. Hacking is a crime that has taken on a global dimension.

This isn't rocket science.

Unless... (4, Insightful)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about a year ago | (#43934071)

Unless it is done by governments or influential companies, I suppose. On the other hand, no exceptions will be made for investigating journalists.

Re:Unless... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934293)

If it's done by governments (and can be proven) it's espionage. Only it's hard to arrest hackers that are protected by their own government, living in their own country.

Re:Unless... (3, Insightful)

dmbasso (1052166) | about a year ago | (#43934327)

On the other hand, no exceptions will be made for investigating journalists.

Of course, the Ministry of Love would never allow that.

[...] face up to two years or more in prison [...] law approved by the European Parliament's civil liberties committee.

Doesn't it seem the doublespeak is becoming more prevalent every day?

Re:Unless ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934431)

I was thinking even further than that.

Like advertisement-brokers who, by use of several means, try to nab a slew of data from a users computer -- without as much as asking. Are they going to be regarded as "hackers" too ?

And lets than not forget the website-owners who, for no other reason than money, are aiding and abbedding in this indiscriminantly surreptious data-syphoning off of their customers.

Ofcourse, I would like those "hacking" charges to be layed onto the app makers (single persons as well as companies) for certain kinds of smartphones who (try to) grab-and-send-back lots of data the app does not need and is often not even asked honest permission for. Heck, he's often even using the same "social engeneering" tricks "hackers" are often slammed with to convince users of those apps to give them such access privileges.

Also, where can a customer put his TOS down, so he can slam a company for breaking it ? How come "companies are, to the Law, just people like you and me", but we cannot have the same protection as a company gives himself ?

Bottom-line: How come the term "hacker" (and accompanying punishments) is used for end-users but never for a company ?

Re:Unless... (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about a year ago | (#43935593)

quiet right should be at least tripled for tabloid hacks and the bent public servants that facilitate them

We're finally safe from the excellent EU hackers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934075)

If other countries don't want to be safe from their hackers, that's their choice.

Government faliure (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934093)

It seems that because the government is powerless to stop the criminal use of hacking, they attempt this to scare people off.
This will most likely be abused against journalists and hackers who only want companies to improve their security.

Wonderful! Let's crucify people using computers! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934095)

Some people suggest a breach of TOS is "hacking", like not using your real name of whatever. Or using wget to download a bunch of articles.

This is insane, we're all computer users nowadays.

I'd be much more delighted if this was about a MAXIMUM sentence cap!

Obligatory XKCD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934113)

http://xkcd.com/870/

Define "Hacking" (5, Interesting)

StoneyMahoney (1488261) | about a year ago | (#43934117)

The Compuworld article uses the term without revealing it's definition as stated in the EU draft law. Is this because it's loosely defined by the EU itself to act as a catch-all act in the future? That idea chills my bones.

Re:Define "Hacking" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934231)

If someone leaves their password blank, and so do you, and you forget to check what username you're logging in as and you log in as them, that's hacking and you go to jail.

up to or more? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934121)

so from zero to infinity?

USoE (0)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | about a year ago | (#43934131)

I wonder if European citizens realized how much of their national sovereignty was at risk when they joined the EU.

Re:USoE (5, Insightful)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43934179)

Why, because of clickbait lie? Read the damn story.

Minimum sentence can be a fine, or nothing. But maximum sentence cannot be less then two years for hacking, and five years for hacking of critical infrastructure. Not to mention that European Parliament is a democratically elected legislative branch of EU, directly elected by member states' citizens. It's the most and arguably only democratic branch of EU.

Re:USoE (5, Informative)

Dogtanian (588974) | about a year ago | (#43934367)

Why, because of clickbait lie? Read the damn story.

To be fair, the summary *doesn't* actually lie.

Even without having checked the comments, it's undeniably obvious that many Slashdotters would skim the summary, see the "two year" figure with respect to "hacking" and "sentences" and jump to the wrong conclusion. And my suspicion is that the editors knew this very well, so yeah, it's probably "clickbait" in that sense.

But if you're paying attention to what the summary actually says, it never claims that there's a minimum two year sentence for "hacking"; it says that there's a minimum limit on the maximum sentence.

Re:USoE (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43934709)

Read the topic. It clearly states "minimum sentence cap" instead of "minimum length of maximum sentence"

Re:USoE (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934755)

A cap is an upper bound, so a "minimum cap" is plausibly a "minimum of a maximum". Terrible English, but not actually wrong.

Of course, this isn't an accident. The summary is carefully crafted to be deliberately misleading. As it often is on Slashdot. Maybe it's time to go elsewhere.

Re:USoE (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year ago | (#43934839)

You must be new here, it is a well known fact that /. editors are incapable of editing even a three word sentence without screwing up. Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.

Re:USoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934887)

A cap is an upper bound, so a "minimum cap" is plausibly a "minimum of a maximum".

I think that you missed the key weasel word. It's "Closer" -- we don't need to be talking about the actual story. We're just moving closer to something.

Of course, this isn't an accident. The summary is carefully crafted to be deliberately misleading. As it often is on Slashdot. Maybe it's time to go elsewhere.

I'm game. Where? Who sucks less? Should we roll our own? I'm still game. What do we call it?

Re:USoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43935213)

"Maybe it's time to go elsewhere".

When I wrote that I was thinking of another website. But they are all bollocks. We could start our own site but people want sensation. So our site could be honest, unsensational and unvisited, or just like everybody else's. What's the point?

Now I'm thinking literally elsewhere. Why do I sit here being fed misinformation for someone else's profit? I could go for a long walk. Resume my chinese classes. Learn to play the guitar I got 20 years ago. Go and see the northern lights.

The internet is a Roman circus. I need to quit.

Re:USoE (3, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#43934751)

So it's a minimum maximum sentence?

Re:USoE (1)

drsquare (530038) | about a year ago | (#43935211)

What's democratic about the EU telling sovereign nations that they have to send people to prison, even when they don't want to?

The sooner we're out of this totalitarian institution the better. They can't even run a fucking currency properly and they're telling nations how to run their justice systems? Absurd.

Re:USoE (2)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934247)

No, we didn't know. Originally we signed up to EFTA (European Free Trade Agreement), which morphed into the EEC (European Economic Community), then into the EC (European Community) in 1993, and in 2009 into the EU (as a political entity) officially (with the Lisbon Treaty).

That is the main beef in the UK. The original referendum only asked if they wanted to join EFTA, and free trade with Europe was a good idea. Since then everything else was essentially scope creep, until we ended up with the monstrosity that is the EU.

Nobody in my generation (or indeed my parents generation) actually had a say in any of this. Nobody gave us a referendum on any of the new treaties, or for whether we wanted further integration.

I guess that is why a lot of people in the EU (not just the UK) see the EU as undemocratic. Even the EU leaders are aware of this, as they keep mentioning the issue of "EU legitimacy" or "democratic deficit".

So they are aware of the shortcomings. Of course, their solution is more EU, with the goal of total political union, and I presume representative democracy via voting in your chosen MEP.

Of course, we'll have no say in any of this until it is presented to us as a done deal, at which point we can vote for MEPs (the UK may not have this fate, as its population has been clamoring for a referendum for ages, and all this assumes the EU doesn't collapse).

USA example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934285)

Don't worry, in another 200 years or so, your states will have no sovereignty. We had sovereign states for the first several decades after our revolution, but now our federal government has shat upon our constitution, and that part which says "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." is just mocked.

Re:USA example (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934643)

In 200 years I won't be here (barring some major technological advance in the next 60 years), so I guess that will be something that has to be dealt with by my kids or grandkids.

That is unless we go through the whole civil war like the US, where one side (either the unionists or confederates) basically get removed from the equation completely, leaving the other free to do what they want.

It would be interesting to see, but I can imagine a world when governments lose power with the loss of sovereignity and disappearance of borders, to be replaced with power blocks that hold no real allegiance to geography. Most likely a return to things like city-states, fiefdoms, corporations big enough to have armies and enough population to qualify as states in their own right.

Re:USA example (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43934807)

...I can imagine a world when governments lose power with the loss of sovereignity and disappearance of borders, to be replaced with power blocks that hold no real allegiance to geography. Most likely a return to things like city-states, fiefdoms, corporations big enough to have armies and enough population to qualify as states in their own right.

You don't have to imagine. We're there already. It is corporations and pirates that create and destroy governments now. In the most basic sense, it has always been that way.

Re:USA example (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934927)

Yeah, but they are minor actors. The major power is still with states. I meant a time when non-state actors are more powerful than governments.

The day you can buy off the shelf manufacturing technology that can produce weapons of mass destruction will probably be the tipping point. The ability of anyone in a garage to put together a nuke sure will herald an interesting time for humanity. We'll either quickly learn to be a very responsible and fair race, or we will probably vanish.

Rest assured we are getting there, but I think its a couple of decades off (barring a change in direction, or an acceleration of wealth transfer and/or manufacturing technology).

Re:USA example (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43935083)

The major power is still with states.

No, the state belongs to and is part of the corporation. It was set up by the corporation for the corporation.

I meant a time when non-state actors are more powerful than governments.

*cough* Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Bayer, Monsanto, Nestle, BP, Shell Oil, IBM, AT&T, Union Carbide (they still around?)... Need I go on? These are the people who make the rules for the state to enforce.

There are no nations. There are no peoples. There are no Russians. There are no Arabs. There are no third worlds. There is no West. There is only one holistic system of systems, one vast and immane, interwoven, interacting, multivariate, multinational dominion of dollars. Petro-dollars, electro-dollars, multi-dollars, reichmarks, rins, rubles, pounds, and shekels. It is the international system of currency which determines the totality of life on this planet. That is the natural order of things today. That is the atomic and subatomic and galactic structure of things today!...There is no America. There is no democracy. There is only IBM, and ITT, and AT&T, and DuPont, Dow, Union Carbide, and Exxon. Those are the nations of the world today.

Re:USoE (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934325)

No, we didn't know. Originally we signed up to EFTA (European Free Trade Agreement), which morphed into the EEC (European Economic Community), then into the EC (European Community) in 1993, and in 2009 into the EU (as a political entity) officially (with the Lisbon Treaty).

Wrong. The EFTA was a competing organization to the EEC. However the EFTA wasn't the hoped success, and thus several countries decided to leave it and join the EC instead (at that time, the EEC had already changed to the EC). However the EFTA never was morphed into the EEC, and indeed still exists, although it's more or less irrelevant these days.

Also, given that at the time the UK left the EFTA and joined the EC, the EC already was political, you cannot claim that it morphed into political after the UK joined. The UK joined well knowing that the EC was a political as much as an economical community.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934613)

Hmm, interesting. Thanks for the information. I was under the impression that EFTA was the precursor to the EEC.

Still, AFAIK the UK only ever had a referendum on joining EFTA, so my point still stands w.r.t. on not having a democratic choice in the matter.

Re:USoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43935681)

Of course you have to blame not the EC, but the UK government for not having a referendum before joining the EC.

Re:USoE (1)

Cenan (1892902) | about a year ago | (#43934397)

The reason you don't get much say in it is because most of your voters are too fucking dumb/lazy to actually produce an informed opinion on the subject. All they see is oh no, we lost some of our sovereignty, we're less British now. You just know that whenever the subject of EU comes up, right wing fanatics are going to jump on it and declare it a war on eggs & bacon, pubs and football, because national pride buys votes. So moderate politicians keep everything they can out of the referendums, because they know a bunch of hacks are going to screw it all up, for no other reason than personal gain - hey look at me, I oppose this, vote for me so I can continue my fat cat lifestyle.

There is no rational discussion of "will this be good for us and the people around us", it's all just "what do I get?". If you started asking questions like "how can we make this work, so that in 50 years the bombs don't start flying again", then you might find your politicians willing to listen. They're doing pretty much the same thing in Denmark, arguing tooth and nail that this or that issue does not warrant asking the people, for the very reasons I stated above. They're not going to come out and say it, but you don't need many brain cells to figure it out. Especially not if you've been around for the last couple of referendums on EU, and seen the sheer idiocy of propaganda shoveled onto voters.

Re:USoE (1)

theM_xl (760570) | about a year ago | (#43934479)

Living in the Netherlands, I did see the sheer idiocy of propaganda the last time they were willing to let us say anything about the EU. Whenever said EU is trying to increase its power - again - we're blitzed with a wide variety of warnings that if we don't do this, the sky will fall on us (or whatever the economic or political equivalent is at the time).

We could make it work so the bombs don't start flying again by NOT trying the exact same thing that has set it off every time before, namely trying to unite Europe under one rule. Though I suppose the bit where making that one rule a Common Enemy to everyone living in Europe is a new approach.

Re:USoE (1)

Cenan (1892902) | about a year ago | (#43934527)

There is a difference in the approach to the unification "under one rule" - namely the lack of bombs dropping. I guess it basically comes down to whether you think sovereignty is worth holding on to at all costs, or not. I honestly don't see the benefit of isolation compared to the benefit of accepting, that in order to work together better, we need to not isolate ourselves.

You're right though, there is a disturbing lack of rational discussion about this. It is always either do or die.

Re:USoE (3, Insightful)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934533)

The reason you don't get much say in it is because most of your voters are too fucking dumb/lazy to actually produce an informed opinion on the subject. All they see is oh no, we lost some of our sovereignty, we're less British now. You just know that whenever the subject of EU comes up, right wing fanatics are going to jump on it and declare it a war on eggs & bacon, pubs and football, because national pride buys votes. So moderate politicians keep everything they can out of the referendums, because they know a bunch of hacks are going to screw it all up, for no other reason than personal gain - hey look at me, I oppose this, vote for me so I can continue my fat cat lifestyle.

Wow, what a bitter tirade! In one fell swoop you've shown exactly the problem with the EU and its supporters. You don't want democracy, you don't want people to choose, you want to decide what is good for them, and if they resist, or don't like it, then they are stupid/lazy/far-right-nuts. Democracy means giving people the right to choose, and includes letting them choose the "wrong" option.
You'll be winning hearts and minds with that attitude, I'll tell you.

And if you want to see a fat-cat lifestyle, try and peer into the live of an European Commissioner. At least the non-governmental fat cats got hold of the money themselves, rather than using my tax money to fund their lifestyles.

There is no rational discussion of "will this be good for us and the people around us", it's all just "what do I get?". If you started asking questions like "how can we make this work, so that in 50 years the bombs don't start flying again"

Why on earth would bombs start flying again? Even if the EU was dissolved tomorrow, I don't see why suddenly war would break out. I mean, people have been living together for a while now in peace, intermarriages, etc... Shengen and free trade did more to build peace than any other part of the EU.
I'd argue that war is more likely if the EU is being kept together by force. Forcing things together will work for a while, but increases the chance that when it does collapse, it will do so in a very bloody way.

They're doing pretty much the same thing in Denmark, arguing tooth and nail that this or that issue does not warrant asking the people, for the very reasons I stated above. They're not going to come out and say it, but you don't need many brain cells to figure it out. Especially not if you've been around for the last couple of referendums on EU, and seen the sheer idiocy of propaganda shoveled onto voters.

Again, politicians showing complete disregard for democracy. "The masses aren't voting for my ideas, they must be stupid/brainwashed/fascists, therefore I must not ask them". That will do nothing but breed resentment, regardless of whether what the politicians are doing is better for them in the long term.

Re:USoE (1)

Cenan (1892902) | about a year ago | (#43934647)

Wow, what a bitter tirade! In one fell swoop you've shown exactly the problem with the EU and its supporters. You don't want democracy, you don't want people to choose, you want to decide what is good for them, and if they resist, or don't like it, then they are stupid/lazy/far-right-nuts. Democracy means giving people the right to choose, and includes letting them choose the "wrong" option.

I guess I'm pretty sick and tired of listening to extremist agendas that has nothing to do with the actual issues at hand. I'm fed up with talk of the dangerous brown people invading, I'm sick of listening to idiots mouth off about things they deep down have no fucking clue about. I'm sick of people forming their opinions from two lines of text on a billboard, or a 5 second spot on whatever news channel reenforces your viewpoint. Generally, I'm sick of uninformed neanderthals setting the agenda. So yeah, I do agree that democracy is the only real way of government, I just wish my fellow voters would use more than 2 seconds making up their minds.

Why on earth would bombs start flying again? Even if the EU was dissolved tomorrow, I don't see why suddenly war would break out. I mean, people have been living together for a while now in peace, intermarriages, etc... Shengen and free trade did more to build peace than any other part of the EU.

Why indeed? I have no fucking clue why, generally it is to support a handful of egomaniacs' personal view of the world, sometimes it happens to kick start the economy. Hell, I bet wars have been started over a girl or a spilled beer. I'm not making any predictions of what will happen if we abandon the EU. I guess we could look at our history as a continent and draw some conclusions. Who knows?

Again, politicians showing complete disregard for democracy. "The masses aren't voting for my ideas, they must be stupid/brainwashed/fascists, therefore I must not ask them". That will do nothing but breed resentment, regardless of whether what the politicians are doing is better for them in the long term.

The actual problem is that people aren't for or against EU, but are for or against completely unrelated issues, that via spin gets projected onto the debate of whether or not EU is a good idea. And that is what pisses me off.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934797)

I guess I'm pretty sick and tired of listening to extremist agendas that has nothing to do with the actual issues at hand. I'm fed up with talk of the dangerous brown people invading, I'm sick of listening to idiots mouth off about things they deep down have no fucking clue about. I'm sick of people forming their opinions from two lines of text on a billboard, or a 5 second spot on whatever news channel reenforces your viewpoint. Generally, I'm sick of uninformed neanderthals setting the agenda. So yeah, I do agree that democracy is the only real way of government, I just wish my fellow voters would use more than 2 seconds making up their minds.

This is a tricky one. I originally hail from a communist country. Our communists had the same opinion, and opened the borders to massive immigration of people (brown or otherwise). Most integrated well (especially Chinese, East Europeans and Africans), however some didn't. Instead they kept to themselves, had multiple wives, and generally bred like crazy. ~50 years down the line they became a demographic majority, and when communism collapsed and the state was weak, they took advantage and kicked off a war of secession, which they won. 25% of my country was annexed, and countless of my people were forced out of land that they lived on for generations, not not mention the lives lost and economic destruction, just because we allowed immigration in the belief that they would integrate and we'd all be better off.

So there is some truth to the "Dangerous foreign people invading", much as I hate to say it. Just that the dangers may not be known for 50+ years. Some groups are happy to integrate and will do so. Others will not. Maybe if we managed to eliminate religion from the equation, even they would be able to, but religion has been with us for thousands of years, I can't think of a way of eliminating it (hell, even the communists couldn't stamp it out, and they were brutally athiest).

As for the rest you said, I agree with you completely. However short of banning television, I can't think of a way of stopping it. That invention has done more to damage critical thinking of an individual than anything else I can think of.

The only thing that could counter it is education, but what government would want to do that? An educated populace is one that they can't easily control nor pull the wool over.

Why indeed? I have no fucking clue why, generally it is to support a handful of egomaniacs' personal view of the world, sometimes it happens to kick start the economy. Hell, I bet wars have been started over a girl or a spilled beer. I'm not making any predictions of what will happen if we abandon the EU. I guess we could look at our history as a continent and draw some conclusions. Who knows?

So you have no proof that it would. You just fear that it would. I mean, most of the EU is in NATO, their armies are tiny, they co-operate on so many levels for so many years. If NATO disbanded tomorrow they would just form their own alliance to keep the peace.

Even if you had some nutbag with penis envy want a war, I don't see why the country would follow. We are past the days of kaisers, monarchs and dictators, where one person can go to war and the country will blindingly follow. Democracy by its nature is not a form of government that lends itself to warlike behaviour, as evidenced by the fact that those who can easily go to war have to either not be democracies, or have democracy corrupted to the point where the people don't have a say (e.g. the UK, millions protested against the iraq war, but the army was under direct government control).

The actual problem is that people aren't for or against EU, but are for or against completely unrelated issues, that via spin gets projected onto the debate of whether or not EU is a good idea. And that is what pisses me off.

Now, that is true, but that is very much due to a lack of critical thinking on part of the population. However, it is in the interests of politicians across the spectrum (and the rich) that they stay that way. Let me know when you work out a way of countering that, for I've not found one yet (that didn't involve a bloody revolution).

Re:USoE (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year ago | (#43934951)

Hell, I bet wars have been started over a girl or a spilled beer.

Being a longtime resident of Belgium I'd say that spilled beer is a perfectly legit reason for starting a war, unless by beer you mean that discolored water that is referred to as beer in the US.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43935121)

That's assuming you lot are sober enough to march in the right direction ;-)

Loved Belgium myself, the museums, waffles and beer (wow, especially the beer) were heavenly. I just can't see how anyone is ever sober enough to actually do what they have to, which might explain a lot about the nature of EU functioning :-P

Re:USoE (1)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year ago | (#43934699)


Why on earth would bombs start flying again? Even if the EU was dissolved tomorrow, I don't see why suddenly war would break out. I mean, people have been living together for a while now in peace, intermarriages, etc... Shengen and free trade did more to build peace than any other part of the EU.
I'd argue that war is more likely if the EU is being kept together by force. Forcing things together will work for a while, but increases the chance that when it does collapse, it will do so in a very bloody way.

Up until I read that last part I was all set to argue against your post, but we have our Civil War that serves as an example of the bloodletting that can occur when trying to forceably preserve a union of desperate states. Still, it doesn't take much to get people at each others throats. All it takes is one nation that feels it needs more land, more resources, or simply more "living space" to start the shit hitting the fan.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43935053)

Up until I read that last part I was all set to argue against your post,

Oh come now, debates are good! :)

but we have our Civil War that serves as an example of the bloodletting that can occur when trying to forceably preserve a union of desperate states.

Trust me I know, my country of origin went through a rather bloody civil war, difference is in the US the unionists won, there the confederates did.

Still, it doesn't take much to get people at each others throats. All it takes is one nation that feels it needs more land, more resources, or simply more "living space" to start the shit hitting the fan.

The European solution to this was free trade and free movement of people. Allows the whole thing to grow (and shrink) organically. Based on your logic, a nation will go to war when its demand for resources cannot be met any other way (war itself is very resource intensive, and only a good idea if the winnings are greater than the costs).

The European solution is typically capitalist. You can have all the land/resources you need, but you'll have to pay for it.

 

Re:USoE (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43934871)

At least the non-governmental fat cats got hold of the money themselves, rather than using my tax money to fund their lifestyles.

The hell they did. They're stealing the money out of your bank account as we speak. Then there's all those nice subsidies they receive courtesy our tax dollars (euros). The "non-governmental" fat cats are using the government to do it. Since they own the government, I guess we shouldn't expect anything less from them.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43935225)

All done with the blessing of the government. So we are still stuck with politicians not looking out for us, and serving their own interests.

I was referring more to those who actually worked hard and built businesses that allowed them a comfortable life. Not the ultra ultra rich who control the worlds money supply and otherwise got rich by screwing over others.

Re:USoE (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year ago | (#43934875)

And if you want to see a fat-cat lifestyle, try and peer into the liver of an European Commissioner.
TFTFY ;-)

Re:USoE (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43934827)

...oh no, we lost some of our sovereignty, we're less British now.

I'll believe that when they learn how to cook... or produce a motorcycle that doesn't leak oil all over your driveway.

Re:USoE (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | about a year ago | (#43934997)

Thanks to the EU crisis, so many French, Italians and Greeks have come here, that the quality of food round my local areas has improved dramatically.

And new cars and motorcycles don't leak oil, primarily because the British aren't allowed to make the engines anymore :o)

Re:USoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43935561)

EFTA did not morph into anything, it still exists with Switzerland, Iceland and Norway. British politicians chose to leave EFTA and become an EEC member. You can thank De Gaulle for vetoing UK's entrance twice (1963 and 1967); The UK could enter the UK only after De Gaulle left power and died.

Re:USoE (1)

physicsphairy (720718) | about a year ago | (#43934283)

Nobody likes democracy unless it's on their side. The enlightened masses who see things your way are a boon, the dazed luddites who dare to disagree a real drag. Giving up some sovereignty can be quite handy to get things the way you want them without all those ignorant plebes standing in the way. Heck, the new arrangement might be quite popular---there's no reason everybody can't get something out of the deal. Of course, the problem with having a government of governments of governments is that, the farther you abstract the roles, the less connection the people in charge have to the citizens at the base of the system.

In this case, do they know anyone who does casual hacking, any whitehats, do they remember smart kids causing a bit of mischief starting off because that's what kids do? Of course, not. They have read the stories about cyberattacks and heard from their corporate friends that this is an issue and they will solve it at the only level and by the only means they are prepared to solve it.

And better stick in some minimum sentencing guidelines because who knows what those weird parochial judges might do if allowed to act on their own sensibilities.

Re:USoE (1)

Cenan (1892902) | about a year ago | (#43934337)

It is laughable to talk of sovereignty with respect to Europe. The fact that the EU member countries surrendered a part of their sovereignty is what has secured the relatively peaceful period in the continent's history (and the cause for awarding the EU with the goddamn Nobel Peace Prize). The borders in the continent have had a habit of changing every 50 years, some even less. Most of the borders in Eastern Europe are just shy of 20 years old (redrawn from before the Soviet Union decided it needed a buffer zone). Some date back to the second World War, and yet they were only 30 years old back then.

The positive consequences of joining the European Union far outweigh the perceived (and often incorrect) negative effects, such as loss of sovereignty. So yeah, take the goddamn sovereignty if that's what it takes to stop shelling each other every 50 years.

Re:USoE (1)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about a year ago | (#43934415)

We DID. There was a referendum and the outcome was NO. That did not stop our corrupt politicians though.

Re:USoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934501)

Ok, I'll bite - and escalate. If we do blunt, general accusations, how about this one?

If wonder if American citizens realised how their civil rights and privacy would get hit if they elected Obama.

Oh, wait... for the second turn they DID know already he was worse than Bush in that regard? Oh, my...

Do you know what the difference between your post and mine is? About mine you can argue, yours is simply uninformed.

Confusing title/summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934133)

"EU Countries Closer To Mandatory Minimum Sentence Cap For Hacking" is not the same as "The proposed rule would prevent E.U. countries from capping sentences for any type of hacking at less than two years."

What the former means: Any law specifying sentences for hacking could not set out a minimum sentence greater than X years (i.e. it must be possible under such a law to sentence a guilty person to some period less than X years).

What the latter means: Any law specifying sentences for hacking could not not set out a maximum sentence greater than X - in this case two - years (i.e. it must be possible under such a law to sentence a guilty person to some period greater than X years).

Re:Confusing title/summary (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#43934449)

"EU Countries Closer To Mandatory Minimum Sentence Cap For Hacking" is not the same as "The proposed rule would prevent E.U. countries from capping sentences for any type of hacking at less than two years."

Actually, it's exactly the same thing. It simpy mandates that the infimum of the set of individual countries' sentence caps be two years. The elements are the sentence caps and the infimum is the mandatory minimum. What's so difficult to understand about it?

This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (3, Insightful)

mybeat (1516477) | about a year ago | (#43934141)

How about all EU countries share the minimum wage, minimum pension and so on? It's a joke that some EU countries have minimum wage of 280~~ euros when cost of living is not that far off from other countries where minimum wage is around 1000 euros. Just look at this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_sovereign_states_in_Europe_by_minimum_wage [wikipedia.org] , what a joke.

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43934181)

Finland has no minimum wage. At all. We're still pretty high up, and our poverty rates are minimal.

Of course that is due to the fact that de facto minimal wage is agreed in negotiations between unions and union of employers for each industry typically on yearly basis among other things.

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934269)

ditto for Denmark

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (1)

ledow (319597) | about a year ago | (#43934359)

Almost all the countries below the half-way-mark on that table are the former Russian states or their immediate neighbours. It's hardly surprising.

And, despite being in the EU, all these places have their own economies. If you force a minimum wage of the UK on, say, Armenia, then employers will have to pay 26 times more on the minimum wage than they do now. In case you don't know, that would basically mean about 20 times more unemployed as a consequence.

There is nothing stopping those people migrating to other EU countries that will take them (open market! For the most part, except where countries are in such a bad economic state that other EU countries won't allow them to emigrate to the rest of the EU), or in campaigning to get the minimum wage to the same levels.

And minimum wage is a bad indicator, average wage would be better. A country that states a £1 an hour minimum wage would not necessarily have anyone working for that, especially if it's 26 times below the cost of living there.

And, sorry, but the cost of living in places in the "top" half of that table (sorted by minimum wage in Euros) is significantly higher than those in the bottom half.

The EU is not there to make us all earn the same, do the same, work the same. It's there to work together, and there's a difference. The UK, for instance, pays a greater proportion of certain subsidies (e.g. farming subsidies) to other countries than the rest of the EU. Something like 2-3 times more, per person, than other countries that reap the benefits of the subsidies.

Nobody said the EU is there to make everyone the same. It's there to make everyone work together to help each other. Which means that some countries have weaknesses and strengths and some countries are in a weaker position than others and is helped out a little.

Are you honestly trying to say that someone in Maldova should be guaranteed the same minimum as someone in the UK is, just because they are in the EU? There's more factors to take account of than that. If you really want something to moan about, look at people who work in the UK, gain benefits they wouldn't be entitled to in their home (EU) country, and then send them back home. Is that really fair? Those who can afford to have a cousin living in the UK getting "free money" (not to mention healthcare, etc.) than those who don't can't get?

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (1)

mybeat (1516477) | about a year ago | (#43935503)

And, despite being in the EU, all these places have their own economies. If you force a minimum wage of the UK on, say, Armenia, then employers will have to pay 26 times more on the minimum wage than they do now. In case you don't know, that would basically mean about 20 times more unemployed as a consequence.

Armenia doesn't have euros.

There is nothing stopping those people migrating to other EU countries that will take them (open market! For the most part, except where countries are in such a bad economic state that other EU countries won't allow them to emigrate to the rest of the EU), or in campaigning to get the minimum wage to the same levels.

How can someone afford to migrate earning minimum wage? They can barely make it through the month.

And minimum wage is a bad indicator, average wage would be better. A country that states a ã1 an hour minimum wage would not necessarily have anyone working for that, especially if it's 26 times below the cost of living there.

Average wage metric is in no where better, 900 people make minimal wage say 300 euros 100 person makes 30000. Now average is 570 which doesn't look bad on a country reports, but does jack shit for people earning minimum wage.
A way better metric would be the median income.

The EU is not there to make us all earn the same, do the same, work the same. It's there to work together, and there's a difference. The UK, for instance, pays a greater proportion of certain subsidies (e.g. farming subsidies) to other countries than the rest of the EU. Something like 2-3 times more, per person, than other countries that reap the benefits of the subsidies.

Wasn't the whole point of a union to make everything equal for its members?

And, sorry, but the cost of living in places in the "top" half of that table (sorted by minimum wage in Euros) is significantly higher than those in the bottom half.

True, cost of living, transportation is way higher. However cost of food is nearly the same (like 0.10 cents difference) and clothing is way cheaper in top countries.

Are you honestly trying to say that someone in Maldova should be guaranteed the same minimum as someone in the UK is, just because they are in the EU? There's more factors to take account of than that. If you really want something to moan about, look at people who work in the UK, gain benefits they wouldn't be entitled to in their home (EU) country, and then send them back home. Is that really fair? Those who can afford to have a cousin living in the UK getting "free money" (not to mention healthcare, etc.) than those who don't can't get?

Moldova doesn't have euros. I have no idea what the price are like there.
Yes that's fair they work on same rules as the locals so why do you think it's not?

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (1)

Xest (935314) | about a year ago | (#43934579)

I don't really understand the problem, I compared to this chart of average wages here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_sovereign_states_in_Europe_by_net_average_wage [wikipedia.org]

If we were to standardise the minimum wage across Europe based on the nations with the highest wage then the minimum wage would be many times higher than the average wage in some of these countries. If we standardise on the lowest wage then people on minimum wage in say the UK would be forced into abject poverty.

The minimum wage seems fairly uniformly relative to the average wage which in turn will correlate closely with the cost of living. What's the problem exactly?

Re:This bs is top priority? for crying out loud. (1)

mybeat (1516477) | about a year ago | (#43935657)

Because average wage is a bullshit metric, see my reply above.

If we were to standardise the minimum wage across Europe based on the nations with the highest wage then the minimum wage would be many times higher than the average wage in some of these countries. If we standardise on the lowest wage then people on minimum wage in say the UK would be forced into abject poverty.

And what about people who currently live in the abject poverty due to not even minimum wages?
Prices are the same for food and clothing are the same across euroland.

This solves nothing; pass laws to fix the holes (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934151)

The problem is we don't invest in securing the infrastructure and and expect technology to lower costs. At the same time these systems are vulnerable to 'hackers' they are vulnerable to attack by foreign states. It's stupid to arrest people who had they been operating from another part of the world would not have been arrested or otherwise gotten off nearly scott free. It's better that you use them to help fix your own infrastructure to the attacks can't be easily repeated.

Re:This solves nothing; pass laws to fix the holes (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about a year ago | (#43934447)

At the same time these systems are vulnerable to 'hackers' they are vulnerable to attack by foreign states.

Aside from the criminal side of the argument about protecting thyself, this point here did make me pause for consideration - my government protects me from attack by foreign states in many other ways, why aren't they protected me from attack across the internet as well?

The British Government spends billions a year maintaining a QRA (Quick Reaction Alert) fleet of aircraft, primed to intercept any foreign aircraft that happens to skirt our shores, it maintains a coastal fleet primed to intercept any foreign ships, it has a nuclear deterrent that costs billions a year, it maintains security at the borders to make it difficult to smuggle arms etc into the country, and it maintains a police force which has anti-terrorism branches specially aimed at preventing foreign attacks within the country.

So where are the protections on the digital borders? And don't say there aren't any digital borders, because there are definitely peering points at which its possible to identify traffic originating from outside the UK.

 

Viva la revolution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934167)

The only way to unwind draconian laws is via revolution.

Re:Viva la revolution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43935433)

Actually for EU laws, there's another way: If a country leaves the EU (which is possible), any EU regulations automatically don't apply any more. Of course any benefits your country might get from the EU also won't apply any more.

"UP TO two years OR MORE" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934191)

So anywhere between absolute zero and until the end of all time... Am I getting this right? ;)

Jailbreak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934205)

Jailbreak any device, go away for two years.

a floor, not a cap (3, Informative)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#43934227)

That's a sentencing floor, not a sentencing cap. A cap would limit the maximum sentencing possible.

Re:a floor, not a cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934273)

It's a floor on the sentencing cap - presumably the sentence can be less than two years. (I'm basing this on the summary of course, not having read TFA)

Re:a floor, not a cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934279)

it is really a floor for the cap

Re:a floor, not a cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934287)

It's setting a floor on all countries sentencing caps, so that countries could have sentencing caps higher than 2 years, but nobody could cap it at lower than 2 years. Everybody could still set a cap at 200 years, but not a year and a half.

Great. Now punish designers & operators also. (1)

Bearhouse (1034238) | about a year ago | (#43934295)

I fear that this could/will be used to clamp down on whitehatting/fair disclosure, perhaps simply just to avoid Govt. red faces, just as much as a deterrence/punishment for the bad guys.

But when are we going to get something like SOX for critical systems designers and operators?
"The X-rays on critical welds for your nuclear plant were faked; 5 years"
"The SCADA system for your nuclear plant is exposed to the internet; 2 years".
"You have an unpatched known vulnerability on your database which led to personal, private information being stolen; 1 year".

Yeah, I know it's fraught with moral peril, and we'd have to devise mechanisms to ensure that SysAdmins did not get hammered instead of their bosses, but until we do that, nothing much will change on the client side.

Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934323)

I like the idea!
So instead of reporting my findings to the vendor and get busted for hacking I'll just post it on full-disclosure@lists.grok.org.uk and watch the Internet burn.

Politician (Noun)
A mentally handicapped person (often used as a general term of abuse).

Defacing a building vs. a website (3, Insightful)

schnipschnap (739127) | about a year ago | (#43934411)

Defacing a website: 2 years in prison
Defacing a building: kids will be kids

Re:Defacing a building vs. a website (1)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about a year ago | (#43935219)

Defacing the entire economy: Have a grab in the country's wallet!

They are setting the Minimum for the Maximum. (1)

TheSunborn (68004) | about a year ago | (#43934425)

They are not making mandatory sentences.

They are saying, that the MAXIMUM sentences a country can give for hacking, must be at least 2 years.

Re:They are setting the Minimum for the Maximum. (1)

black3d (1648913) | about a year ago | (#43934559)

Thank you for clearing that up. Makes a lot more sense.

Weasels (1)

tkuCheck (2944677) | about a year ago | (#43934471)

"Hackers would face up to two years or more in prison [...]"

They are facing between zero and infinite years in prison?

Re:Weasels (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934749)

"Hackers would face up to two years or more in prison [...]"

They are facing between zero and infinite years in prison?

Where do you see a lower bound of zero stated? The way this is phrased, hacking might even lead to a reduction of a prison sentence.

"Up to two years or more" (2)

Arancaytar (966377) | about a year ago | (#43934487)

That's an extremely informative statement.

http://xkcd.com/870/ [xkcd.com]

(...) maximum (...) would be at least (...) (2)

matthiasvegh (1800634) | about a year ago | (#43934495)

Wait what?

Who comes up with these numbers? (1)

black3d (1648913) | about a year ago | (#43934555)

So.. gain "unauthorized access" on a publicly available terminal/website/kiosk/library PC due to poor security and you get a MINIMUM 2 years in prison. This would include clicking Google results that take you into an "unauthorized" section of someone's public-facing website as we've seen time and time again.

But intentionally infect thousands of machines with damaging, keylogging, DDOS bots and you get a MAXIMUM 3 years?

Re:Who comes up with these numbers? (1)

black3d (1648913) | about a year ago | (#43934577)

OK scratch that.. I too misunderstood the wording surrounding the minimum maximum...

But I still think 3 years is an insane maximum for creating botnets. That means not only is it just more lucrative than robbing a bank, but the maximum is half the minimum for armed robbery. Way to encourage more online crime?

The reason why they're doing this (1)

pmikell (578334) | about a year ago | (#43934691)

A possible motive behind this kind of minimum sentence cap is the fact that agreements allowing persons sentenced to prison by foreign courts to serve their sentence in their country of origin also allow said country of origin to reduce the sentence to the maximum its justice system allows for the crime in cases where the original sentence passed by the foreign court was longer. An example of what could happen without this: a hacker from e.g. Bulgaria is caught, tried, found guilty, and sentenced to 5 years imprisonment in e.g. Germany, returned to Bulgaria to serve his sentence under the terms of a repatriation treaty, only for the Bulgarian justice system to say "oh, the maximum sentence for hacking here is 2 weeks" and release him immediately because he's already served that waiting to be repatriated.

"Up to two years or more" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43934861)

Isn't "up to two years or more" any possible length? I have up to £1000 or more in my bank account right now.

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