Criminal Offences (Misuse of Digital Technologies and Services) (Consolidation) Bill (HC Bill 151)

A

BILL

TO

Consolidate offences relating to the misuse of digital devices, technologies,
systems and services for the purposes of committing or preparing to commit
or aiding, abetting, facilitating or concealing the commission of a crime or
disposal of the proceeds of a crime; to make provision reflecting technological
advancements, including the training of criminal justice personnel; to
establish a duty for the Secretary of State to provide advice and guidance to
the digital and telecommunications services industry aimed at reducing the
misuse of digital technologies for criminal purposes; and for connected
purposes.

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and
consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present
Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1 Digital crime: definition

(1) For the purposes of this Act, “digital crime” is any crime where digital devices,
technologies, systems and services are used for purposes including, but not
limited to, committing or preparing to commit a crime, aiding, abetting,
5facilitating or concealing the commission of a crime or disposal of the proceeds
of a crime.

(2) An offence of digital crime includes any offence against the person where
digital devices, technologies, systems and services are used for purposes
including, but not limited to, harassment, stalking, hate crime, abuse of a
10former partner (including the publication of revenge pornography), identity
theft, cyber-theft, trolling and grooming in preparation for sexual or other
forms of exploitation.

2 Review

(1) The Secretary of State must undertake a review of legislation which contains
15powers to prosecute individuals who may have been involved in the
commission of digital crime with a view to consolidating such powers in a
single Act of Parliament.

Criminal Offences (Misuse of Digital Technologies and Services) (Consolidation) BillPage 2

(2) In conducting the review under subsection (1), the Secretary of State must have
regard to any enactment that he deems appropriate, including but not limited
to—

  • Malicious Communications Act 1988, section 1

  • 5Protection from Harassment Act 1997, section 2, 2a, 4,4a

  • Offences against the Person Act 1861, section16, 20, 39, 47

  • Data Protection Act 1998, section 10, 13 and 55

  • Criminal Justice Act 1998, section 160

  • Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, section 30(1), (3),(5),(6),
    1078,(5)

  • Computer Misuse Act 1990, as amended by Serious Crime Act 2015 And
    Police and Justice Act 2006

  • Contempt of Court Act 1981

  • Human Rights Act 1998

  • 15Public Order Act 1986, section 4, 4a, 5, 16(b), 18

  • Serious Organised Crime Act 2005, section 145, 46

  • Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006, section 48

  • Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2014, section 32, 34,35,36,37

  • Protection of Children Act 1978

  • 20Obscene Publications Act 1959

  • Crime and Disorder Act 1998, section 28, 29-32

  • Criminal Justice Act 2003, section 145,146

  • Communications Act 2003, section 127,128-131

  • Data retention and Investigatory Powers Act 2014, section 4

  • 25Sexual Offences Amendment Act 1992, section 5

  • Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015

  • Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, section 33(5) 29(6)

  • Criminal Damage Act 1971, section 2

  • Sexual Offences Act 2003 section 4, 8, 10, 62

  • 30Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 section 43

  • Magistrates Court Act, 1980 section 127

  • Suicide Act 1961 section 2(1) as amended by Coroners and Justice Act 2009

  • Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008, section 63

  • Theft Act 1968, section 21

  • 35Criminal Law Act 1977, section 51(2).

(3) It shall be a duty on the Secretary of State to determine whether the review
should address any statute other than those listed in subsection (2) under
which persons have been prosecuted for a crime falling under section 1 of this
Act.

(4) 40In conducting the review under subsection (1), the Secretary of State must
consult with any person or body he deems appropriate, including but not
limited to—

(a) police forces,

(b) the Crown Prosecution Service,

(c) 45the judiciary, and

(d) any community organisations the Secretary of State considers relevant.

Criminal Offences (Misuse of Digital Technologies and Services) (Consolidation) BillPage 3

3 Draft consolidation bill: digital crime

The Secretary of State must publish a draft of a bill intended to be enacted as
the consolidating Act of Parliament mentioned in section 2(1) within 12 months
of the completion of the consultation process in section 2.

4 5Training and education: digital crime awareness

(1) It shall be the responsibility of the Secretary of State to facilitate and
encourage—

(a) educational establishments to provide pupils and students with
guidance on ways to mitigate risks to themselves in using digital
10devices and services, including the establishment of a telephone
advisory service on such matters;

(b) police services to improve the knowledge and skills of police officers in
relation to the investigation of digital crime as defined in section 1; and

(c) police services to separately record allegations and outcomes relating
15to digital crime.

(2) It shall be a duty of the Secretary of State to publish an annual report on the
incidence of digital crime.

5 Providers of digital services

(1) The Secretary of State shall prepare and publish a code of conduct and
20standards for providers of digital services, including online services.

(2) The Secretary of State may issue guidance on the observance of the code under
subsection (1) from time to time as he sees fit.

(3) The Secretary of State may, by regulation, make provision about—

(a) service providers’ responsibilities in circumstances where a service
25user suffers online abuse or becomes the victim of a digital crime;

(b) the level of mandatory or automatic privacy settings or other technical
protection to be provided to users aged under 18;

(c) the conduct and publication of digital safety impact assessments by
providers of subscription online services;

(d) 30the reporting to the police of evidence of risk or threat to individual
service users by service providers;

(e) the removal of illegal content by providers from their systems; and

(f) encouraging providers to establish age-appropriate content controls.

6 Citation, commencement and extent

(1) 35This Act may be cited as the Misuse of Digital Technologies and Services
Consolidation Act 2016.

(2) This Act comes into force on such a day as the Secretary of State may by
statutory instrument appoint, and different days may be appointed for
different provisions or for different purposes.

(3) 40This Act extends to England, Wales and Northern Ireland.