On 11 January 2013, Director "Wainwright and European Commissioner for Home Affairs "Cecilia Malmström, launched the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3), which is aiming to tackle those cyber-crimes:
- Committed by organised groups to generate large criminal profits such as online fraud
- Causing serious harm to the victim such as online child sexual exploitation
- Affecting critical infrastructure and information systems in the "E.U.
The European Cybercrime Centre (EC3 or EC³) is an organisation of the "European Union attached to Europol in "The Hague. The purpose of the centre is to coordinate cross-border law enforcement activities against "cybercrime and act as a centre of technological expertise. It will start with five experts, expanding to a staff of 40 in 2013, but was not expected to be fully functional till 2015. It was officially opened on 11 January 2013. It is tasked with assisting member states in their efforts to dismantle and disrupt cyber crime networks and will also develop tools and provide training.The europol cybercrime centre does not take reports from the public, rather, reports are referred by law-enforcement authorities of member states.
Cooperation with third countries and other bodies
The Director of Europol is able to enter into agreements for Europol with both countries and internal organizations. Europol cooperates on an operational basis with: "Albania, "Australia, "Canada, "Colombia, "Iceland, "Liechtenstein, "Republic of Macedonia, "Monaco, "Montenegro, "Norway, "Serbia, "Switzerland, the "United States and "Interpol.
It has strategic agreements with: "Bosnia and Herzegovina, "Moldova, "Russia, "Turkey, "Ukraine, "Georgia, "United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and the "World Customs Organization.
Criticisms of Europol
Despite being funded by the EU, Europol has been found to have gaps between the funds allocated and its operational results achieved.
Its weakness lies in its very formalized structure, which causes loss of flexibility and its poor management of their multiple centres that control its operating activities.
Due to its information collection and analysis core, it is unable to actually search for information, i.e. no system to find persons or things, no resources for wiretapping etc. and is consequently deprived of the most important function in terms of operational efficiency.
There lacks sufficient representation of customs and border protection at Europol as well as a clear division of tasks between Europol and other EU institutions such as "CEPOL or "Frontex.
Though Europol focuses a large amount on anti-terrorism, its reputation is rather poor in this area. It lacks potential in its anti-terrorism department to take effective action against terrorism, especially because it is not included in the "Club de Berne (the largest anti-terrorism forum in the EU) and because there are many EU member states, (UK for one example) who are the source of Europol’s information, which do not completely trust Europol.
- "Area of freedom, security and justice
- "European Gendarmerie Force
- "Visa Information System
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|""||Wikimedia Commons has media related to Europol.|
- Official Website of Europol
- "Final Design for new Europol Headquarters The Hague". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28.
- Europol convention (main legal instrument until 2010)
- Council Decision of 6 April 2009 establishing the European Police Office (Europol) (governing council decision)