The National Assembly is working this Monday on orientation and programming bill of the Ministry of the Interior (Lopmi). Carried by Gérald Darmanin, the text, for which the majority is counting on the support of the right, provides for an additional budget of 15 billion euros over five years for the Ministry of the Interior. Nearly 8,500 police and gendarme positions must thus be created over the five-year term. Passed without incident in October in the Senate, mainly on the right, the bill contains more than a thousand amendments which will be examined all week by the deputies.
“15 billion euros (…) we must measure what this means after the 10 billion euros of the previous five-year period”, argues the Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin, who ensures to appear before the deputies “the ‘open mind”. If almost all parliamentarians support an increase in resources for the police, their direction raises questions, even antagonisms with part of the left.
Cybersecurity at the heart of the project
Nearly half of the 15 billion euros announced must be devoted to the digital transformation of the ministry. To fight against cybercrime, the bill allows seizures of digital assets. It also provides for more severe penalties for sexist insult and includes several measures to simplify criminal procedure. Victims will be able to file a complaint by videoconference.
An emergency number, 17 cyber, a kind of equivalent of the traditional call to 17, must also be set up to deal with the increase in cyberattacks. It will be intended for companies: from small SMEs to the aerospace giant Thalès, but also to all individuals who are victims of computer attacks, including hospitals and communities. It will be used to report a cyberattack or an online scam and “to be immediately put in touch with a specialized operator”, according to Gérald Darmanin. 1,500 additional “cyberpatroller” positions must also be created.
According to the Ministry of the Interior, one in five companies has been the victim of a cyberattack during the year. The average ransom demanded is now 6,400 euros, up 50% per year since 2016, but it can sometimes reach several million euros. The future Lopmi law therefore provides that insurers can reimburse the cyber-ransoms paid by their customers, but on the condition that they filed a complaint 48 hours after the ransom was paid. A new provision will be introduced in the insurance code.
Reinforcement of staff for major sporting events
The organization of the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris and the Rugby World Cup in 2023 weighs heavily in this rise in the fight against cybercrime. Two years ago, Tokyo games had indeed been the subject of more than four billion cyberattack attempts. In terms of public order, in addition to the creation of 8,500 police and gendarme posts over the next five years, the bill provides for the creation of 11 new mobile force units specializing in rapid intervention in the event of violent clashes. .
It is also planned to extend the fixed fine to around twenty offences. The deputies in committee added the case of the crime of obstructing road traffic, which the left sees as a disguised offensive against the actions yellow vests or climate activists. The senators have increased the penalties for violence against elected officials, urban rodeos and refusals to comply. Since the beginning of the year, twelve people have died after police fire when they refused to comply.
Another sensitive point: while the political class is divided on the reception of the Ocean Viking with 230 migrants on board, the roadmap annexed to the bill evokes the strengthening of the prerogatives of the Frontex border guards, the European border surveillance agency. MEPs could debate it as early as Monday evening. Finally, the very controversial reform of the judicial police is also addressed in this appendix. She has already invited herself into the exchanges in the Senate where Gérald Darmanin had tried to calm things down.