Belbachir Larbi releases a new edition in 2 volumes of his book “Customs at the digital frontiers”

Belbachir Larbi releases a new edition in 2 volumes of his book “Customs at the digital frontiers”
Belbachir Larbi releases a new edition in 2 volumes of his book “Customs at the digital frontiers”

In 2024, a century later in a globalized world, cross-border movements of people, goods and capital have become exponential. This has changed the time scale for the customs officer who, today, can no longer operate in the same way. With thousands of tariff positions and millions of tons of goods flowing by sea, land and air, he has a few minutes, even seconds, to act most of the time behind a screen. Ways of thinking and acting are then completely disrupted.

This is where technology comes in with solutions that attempt to tame the technical complexity of the profession and fight against the malice of fraudsters. The latter which greatly threatens the economic, financial and security interests of States.

With the advent of artificial intelligence, blockchain and even big data, technology must be able to provide viable solutions to improve the quality of public service provided to the community. Originally designed to optimize the management of customs operations, it also risks becoming the instrument, body and object of customs offenses.

For its part, the profession must renew itself in its codes, its provisions, its practices and its approaches, with the objective of reconciling the imperative of fluidity of a border and the requirement of regulation of exchanges, which are extraordinarily growing.

And the law must be able to keep up with the times and adapt more quickly to better ensure the supervision of cross-border trade and offer the legal guarantees necessary for the exercise of customs missions. These multiple realities call for a real overhaul to give customs the means to meet the digital challenge. Bearing multiple risks, the challenge of adapting customs to this new context is at this price.

Customs expert, Belbachir Larbi explores possible responses to these challenges. The first volume of his book “Customs at the digital frontiers – Digital technology, instrument of crime” deals with computer offenses as provided for and punished by customs criminal law. These are breaches or cyber-attacks that are carried out on customs digital systems using technical processes. This first part highlights the shortcomings of the legislation in this area and suggests solutions. However, he limited himself only to current incriminations and sanctions.

Its second volume, entitled “Customs at the digital frontiers – Changes, risks and means of action”, delves deeper into the subject: no longer considering digital technology as a victim of malicious acts, but questioning it as being at the same time the instrument and corpus delicti in customs. Because the digital situation generates other threats, in particular cross-border electronic transactions, the control of which is eminently more complex. ‎


Larbi Belbachir worked for nearly forty years in Moroccan customs. Major in 1973 of the international promotion of the National School of French Customs in Neuilly, he was successively appointed to management positions at central and regional level, after having led several operational intervention units. He will end his career as advisor to the Director General of Customs, decorated with the Order of National Merit of exceptional rank. His experience in the fields of customs intelligence, the fight against fraud and illicit drug trafficking was the subject of the publication of the two-volume work “Customs at the digital frontiers” and several publications in African and international media. ‎



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