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UNODC hosts cyber threat intelligence in countering terrorist operations training in Lao PDR

Vientiane, Lao PDR (14 November 2019)
- Officials from the Lao government completed a three-day training course on darknet investigations and countering terrorist operations online. As a part of UNODC's Global Programme on Cybercrime, participants learned how to monitor criminal activity and collect cyber threat intelligence on the darknet. The training also helped build connections and develop relationships between Lao officials working to address cybercrime in Lao PDR, including law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and information technology experts from various departments across government.

Rapid economic development and the expansion of internet connectivity presents new challenges for criminal justice systems in Southeast Asia. Criminal networks have taken advantage of improved digital communications infrastructure to make their operations more efficient-and elusive. Using the internet as an illicit marketplace has made drug trafficking, human smuggling, wildlife trafficking, and child sexual exploitation more difficult for law enforcement to detect. To fulfill their mandate and prevent criminal activity, law enforcement agencies must be able to meet the challenge of policing on the surface web and the darknet.

The three-day training course prepared participants to conduct criminal investigations in the darknet. UNODC experts trained police officers to protect their identity and their hardware when conducting investigations online, and used the technical expertise of participants from the Lao Computer Emergency Response Team to encourage peer-to-peer learning between officials. Having completed this course, Lao law enforcement will be able to collect data from the darkweb to support ongoing investigations into transnational organized crime. This training session builds on the success of the Cryptocurrencies and Darknet Investigations Training Course hosted by UNODC in September, where many of the same participants learned about how cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology impact modern law enforcement. By providing opportunities like these, UNODC and international partners are preparing Lao law enforcement to address the challenges of policing in a digital world.