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17 Cyber, the government unveils a hotline for cyberattacks

President Emmanuel Macron on Monday formalized the 17 cyber device, an emergency number intended to support cyberattacks.

“Cyber ​​is the element of threat of tomorrow”. It is on this declaration that the government formalized, Tuesday, January 11, its desire to strengthen its action plan against cybercrime in France. During a question-and-answer session in front of the National Assembly, Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin detailed the measures announced the day before by the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron. Among them, the recruitment of 1,500 “cyberdéfenseurs” to the forces of order, but above all setting up an emergency number.

Aware that phishing, data theft and cyberattacks are becoming more widespread, the government estimates that within five years, “almost all citizens” will have experienced an attempted scam on the Internet. Companies will also not be spared: last year, one in two was the victim of a cyber attack. A figure that is expected to increase in the coming months.

17 Cyber

To respond to the increase in cyber threats, the government wants to create an emergency number exclusively dedicated to online attacks. Intended for both individuals and companies, it will be accessible 24 hours a day, and will put callers in contact with experts working within structures such as the National Agency for Information Systems Security (Anssi) or the Ministry of ‘Interior. Concretely, this could allow an individual who receives revenge porn threats to immediately call the service, in order to know the risks and possible remedies in this type of situation. This will also apply to phishing emails accusing the victim of possessing child pornography images, or to companies, which could be “at once” accompanied in case ofransomware attack.

More than just a simple emergency number, the experts of this cyberpolice will also be able to play the role legal support for victims. They will thus be able to advise it in its steps, in particular in the filing of a complaint, and the digital evidence backup.

Cyber ​​remains virtual

The government announcement about this emergency number is undeniably good news. However, the project still seems very in its infancy, if not to say non-existent. The Ministry of the Interior has not yet given concrete details around the project – starting with the number assigned to the service, and recognizes that “for the moment we are more in the intention than in the concrete”. We will therefore have to take our troubles patiently for the victims. The precise legal framework of this 17 Cyber ​​should be defined next March, when the planning and orientation bill of the Ministry of the Interior (Lopmi) will be presented to the Council of Ministers.

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