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US-China Hash Out Cybercrime Fighting Rules

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During talks in Washington, D.C., this week U.S. and Chinese officials have reached an agreement on the guidelines each country will follow when addressing malicious cyber activities or cybercrime threats.

On Tuesday (Dec. 1) Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson met with Chinese State Councilor Guo Shengkun to co-chair the first U.S.-China High-Level Joint Dialogue on Cybercrime and Related Issues.

“During the dialogue, both countries discussed ways to enhance cooperation within the bounds of each nation’s legal framework and assessed progress made on cases identified during their discussions in September 2015,” a press release from the Department of Justice stated.

The agreement document and its included guidelines set a precedent for the common understanding and expectations each country will exhibit regarding the information provided when requests for assistance are made to handle cybersecurity risks.

China’s Ministry of Public Security told Reuters the agreement would have a “major impact” on impeding online security measures, noting that the two countries will continue to maintain open communication about the issue.

The discussions also laid out future plans and how resolutions of cybercrime-related activities will be handled going forward.

Yesterday (Dec. 3) cyber incident and network protection experts from the U.S. and China met in an effort to enhance cooperation. The two groups will continue to meet on a regular basis to support future dialogues.

The Department of Justice confirmed that during the spring of 2016 both sides will conduct a tabletop exercise to help facilitate common understanding for each country’s authorities, processes and procedures. The cybersecurity-related scenarios will reportedly cover preventing terrorist misuse of technology and the presentation of network protection exchanges by security experts.

Next year will also welcome the second U.S.-China High-Level Dialogue on Combatting Cybercrime and Related Issues, which is scheduled to take place during June 2016 in Beijing, China.

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