Government Wants to Expand Online Complaints


Appropriations Act : Gwengoat/iStock

Through its justice reform project, the government wishes to allow citizens to file complaints entirely from the Internet. However, the reform will be gradual, and will initially concern only a relatively limited number of offences.

The current online pre-complaint system, which will be generalised in 2013, will soon be supplemented by the remote filing of real complaints. It will no longer be necessary to go to the police station or gendarmerie post.

With this reform – initially initiated by the previous government – the executive hopes to “simplify the judicial process for victims, which is currently often too complex“.

A device fit for cyber-scams

Article 26 of the bill of “reform for justice“, presented on Friday 20 April in the Council of Ministers authorizes the filing of “by electronic means” complaints. This is, however, only a major principle, which will be supplemented by regulation.

The government will indeed have to define by decree “cases” concerned by this reform. “It seems excessive to provide that any offence, including, for example, a crime, or a serious offence against the person, can be the subject of a complaint online“, the executive justifies in its impact study.

However, we learn that the scheme will apply “initially” to “property offences committed over the Internet, such ascyber scams”.

And for good reason. A few years ago the public authorities asked the OCLCTIC, the unit of the Ministry of the Interior in charge of the Pharos platform, to develop a portal dedicated to complaints about cyber-scams. It is scheduled to go into operation in June.

A platform expected to be operational in June

This platform, entitled “THESEE” (for “harmonised processing of investigations and reports of e-scams”), is designed to “receive complaints or reports recorded directly by individuals” on a dedicated Internet portal, or even “filed with a police or gendarmerie department“.

Thanks to an orientation questionnaire, the victim will be guided in his or her statement and may possibly be referred to the competent services if the reported offence does not fall within the scope of the THESEE scheme, explains the Executive. Cross-checking of procedures and identification of authors will be encouraged. The use of complaints and alerts will also ensure that the matter is referred to the public prosecutor’s offices with territorial jurisdiction. »

Only offences committed on the Internet according to the following modus operandi are concerned by this project:

  • The ” Classified Ad and Romance Scams
  • The ” webcam blackmail “…
  • The ” fake sales sites “…
  • The ” usurpations of mailbox “…
  • The ” ransoms “.

With this platform, the Ministry of the Interior intends to “improve the service provided to victims ofInternet scams”. At the same time, he hopes to “relieve territorial services of the burden of taking a large number ofcomplaints” – Place Beauveau estimates that the reform could affect between 42,000 and 55,000 complaints per year.

Finally, the investigators plan to use a “dedicatedalgorithm” to “the centralization, analysis and grouping of thesecomplaints”.

Possible “reports” via the Internet for fraud in BC

The bill introduced by Nicole Belloubet, the Minister of Justice, nonetheless stipulates that the “modalities” for implementing online complaints (sending of any supporting documents, receipt of the minutes, etc.) will be specified at a later date, again by decree.

In any event, the system should be extended to reports (and not complaints) from victims of card fraud The government’s impact study emphasizes the Perceval project, a platform that “could be deployed in the first half of 2018“.

The text has been tabled in the Senate, under expedited procedure. It should therefore only be read once per assembly.

Published on April 24, 2018 at 2:00 pm




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