There is currently no single law or other regulatory instrument in Israel that explicitly addresses cybercrime and terrorism simultaneously. Nor has the Israeli Government published an explicit counter-terrorism or cyber-terrorism strategy. However, the 2016 Counterterrorism Law does define a “terrorist act” in a broad manner that is likely to encompass most terrorist uses of the internet.
With respect to activity in cyberspace in general, Israel has a number of laws and regulations that are applicable, including the Computers Law of 1995; the Protection of Privacy Law of 1981 and associated regulations, including the Protection of Privacy Regulations (Data Security) 5777-2017; and the Law for Regulating Security in Public Bodies of 1998. A key law that enables governmental surveillance of the internet for security purposes is the Israeli Security Agency (“Shabak”) Law of 2002. Several government decisions also address activity in cyberspace and cybersecurity.
STRATEGIES, POLICIES AND LAWS
Article 24 criminalizes “demonstrating identification with a terrorist organization and incitement to terrorism” and Article 29 outlaws “training or instruction for the purposes of terrorism”.
Government Resolution No 2443 – Advancing National Regulation and Governmental Leadership in Cyber Security (2015) & Government Resolution No 2444 – Advancing the National Preparedness for Cyber Security
Cyber-Security Resolutions No 2443 and 2444 do not include the word “terrorism”. However, the background paper of these two resolutions clearly states that cyber-threats include threats from terrorist organizations.
Israel’s new cybersecurity bill of 2018 deals with the cyber issue but does not include any specific mention of terrorist use of the internet.
The “Facebook Bill”, also known as the “Bill for the Removal from the Internet of Content Whose Publication Constitutes an Offense”, sought to combat those publishing inciting content on the internet. It aimed to deal with social media publications that encourage terror against Israelis or Jews. However, the proposed bill was removed from the agenda of the Knesset by Prime Minister Netanyahu on the grounds that it undermines the principle of freedom of expression.
The Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance No. 33 of 5708-1948 details the procedure of dealing with terrorism in Israel. This includes defining terrorist activities, arresting the perpetrator and punishing terrorists. Since 1948 it has been amended 3 times (1980, 1986 and 1993).
The Israeli Security Agency has a Technology and Cyber division that deals with counter-terrorism and cyber-security.
This Authority was established as a financial intelligence unit acting in tandem with international laws concerned with the occurrence of money laundering.
The C4I and Cyber Defense Directorate are responsible for cyber defense in the IDF.
The Israel National Cyber Directorate is responsible for all aspects of cyber defense in the civilian arena; it makes policy, builds technological power, and acts as the operational defense of Israel in the cyberspace.