The US Senate has ratified the international Convention on Cybercrime, bringing the long-running treaty discussion one step nearer reality.

The Council of Europe's Convention on Cybercrime, which aims to increaseinternational cooperation on internet investigations, is the firstinternational treaty covering computer-related crime and the gatheringof electronic evidence. Fifteen European nations, including Albania,Denmark, France, Norway and the Ukraine, have already fully ratified thefinal document, although the UK has yet to do so.

US Attorney General Alberto R Gonzales said in a statement: "This treatyprovides important tools in the battles against terrorism, attacks oncomputer networks and the sexual exploitation of children over theinternet by strengthening US cooperation with foreign countries inobtaining electronic evidence."