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January 30, 2012

Anti-Cybercrime Bill gets Senate approval

The Senate finally approved their own version of the Anti-Cybercrime Bill (Senate Bill 2796) earlier today. The bill provides for penalties of Php200,000 to Php1.25 million and imprisonment of up to 12 years.

Here are the offenses covered in the Senate Bill 2796.

I. Offenses against the confidentiality, intergrity and availability of computer data and systems (illegal access, illegal interception, data interference, system interference, cyber-squatting, misuse of devices).

II. Computer-related offenses (computer-related forgery, computer-related fraud).

III. Content-related offenses (cybersex, child pornography, unsolicited commercial communications, libel).

This bill will certainly affect operations of a number of websites and online services in the Philippines.

The provision for spamming includes the following.

Advertising and selling products or services via the Internet without the consent of the recipient will likewise be fined of Php50,000 – Php250,000. Violators could also face imprisonment of one month and one day to six months.

This will affect all those real estate brokers sending out emails for new properties, insurance and credit card companies offering loans over email and those sending out mass emails saying “I’m selling my 2nd hand gadget…”.

This could also apply to those using Facebook to send out messages to their network or tagging people with the purpose of advertising or selling items.

Bloggers and website owners can be also liable under the cybersex provision of this bill.

The willful engagement, maintenance, control, or operation, directly or indirectly, or any lascivious exhbition of sexual organs or sexual activity, with the aid of a computer system, for favor or consideration.

This could mean the end of sex scandals on the web (as it could punish all those who share, blog or post any sex scandals). Are we going to say goodbye to Flesh Asia Daily?

That’s on top of the internet libel clause.

A new group — called the National Cybersecurity Coordinating Council — will be formed under the Office of the President to implement all these.


46 Responses to “Anti-Cybercrime Bill gets Senate approval”

  1. Nick Dael
    Twitter: nickdael
    says:

    whoopsie daisy, pilipinas

  2. budflick
    Twitter: Budflick
    says:

    nice bill if implemented. especially those so called “marketers” that offer “free sms” websites for the sole purpose of gathering their mobile numbers for 3rd party purposes (sms marketing, sms broadcasting, etc). I was once a victim of a marketer from makati, he made me to create a program for the exchange of a work in his office. but after he got my software he said its just “kinapalan ang mukha”. what a scammer. and when i tried to make a post about him he then cyber bullied me that he can reverse the issue and give me a libel case instead. it made me realize not to make deals online. we never again met nor communicate after the incident and i think he had abandoned the free sms program. lucky for me i saved our ym conversations in the event worse happen.

  3. trixie says:

    yuga, what does this mean?

    This will affect all those real estate brokers sending out emails for new properties, insurance and credit card companies offering loans over email and those sending out mass emails saying “I’m selling my 2nd hand gadget…”.

    – will it affect consumers who just wish to sell some of their old stuff?

    • yuga says:

      This will make spamming a crime and affects everyone who sends out emails with the intent of selling without prior consent.

  4. budflick
    Twitter: Budflick
    says:

    @trixie i think its not per se. its not a crime to sell your old stuff. but selling old stuff to users whom you got emails from a database of email/sms marketers – its called spamming and thats a potential crime (if implemented).

    you see theres a distinction of “pure service” to “hoax service”.

    there are websites that lets you send free sms but your number is not being saved.

    there are a LOT of sms websites that lets you send sms and RETAINS your number for marketing purposes and those websites asking for your emails for “free promos and support”. (of course they will use other #/email so you wont suspect from whom the text/email came from — thats what i learnt from my conversation to a marketer). then after a couple of weeks you get surprised you are being offered with condo unit at d’fort or a website link of another spam.

  5. JKisaragi says:

    “This could also apply to those using Facebook to send out messages to their network or tagging people with the purpose of advertising or selling items.”

    Correct me if I’m wrong here but I think accepting a friend request (or liking a page for that matter) is tantamount to providing consent. Hence, the one who’s accepting the request is assumed to know that upon acceptance, he/she could be subjected or exposed to all of the posts or status updates of that person, and those may include the Advertising or Selling of items.

    Sir Abe, do you have a full copy of the bill? Or is it already available online? Hirap hanapin eh. Mag-advanced reading lang sana. :)

    • JKisaragi says:

      Ayun! Thanks Jerome. :)

    • Ayan. I’ve been looking online for a copy of that bill, salamat.

      Before the next person comments on this, it might help to read the bill in its entirety muna. It can be tiring, but it helps to comprehend something better before commenting on what might not necessarily be fully understood.

  6. Hi yuga! I would like to ask, what will be the effect of this bill on the status of eCommerce in the Philippines. Thanks!

  7. budflick
    Twitter: Budflick
    says:

    will this mean that the advertisements on website will have a “opt out”/notice. aww i think i need a blog ads makeover after reading the bill lol .

  8. mrloo says:

    I agree with the sex scandals, but promoting your own business on Social Networking such as Facebook is prohibited? That is absurd!

    • budflick
      Twitter: Budflick
      says:

      sabi section 4.c.3 ganun eh… ung ads dapat may opt out / reject, hindi naka disguise, at may consent sa user. eh pano pala ung blogs na merong inline ads at saka may mga ads dapat i explicit ba na “this is advertisement”?

  9. Iyan Sommerset
    Twitter: iyansommerset
    says:

    Sounds like a trying-hard, all-encompassing bill that doesn’t really understand the specifics of what they broadly define as “cybercrime”.

    Which leads to…when has cyberSEX *ever* been a crime? Last I checked, we weren’t a Muslim country governed by Sharia Law. The way I understand it/the way the law sounds written, can you be prosecuted for just being naked on cam with your boyfriend/girlfriend? If the answer if “yes”, then that provision is too broadly-written.

    • budflick
      Twitter: Budflick
      says:

      the posession i suppose, just like sen.revilla said about the ramgen scandal. its like china over here. internet censorship everywhere. even posting your personal opinion can put you to jail. tsk tsk.

  10. Noir says:

    As long as no censorships and privacy intrusions are happening.

  11. Digest says:

    Thank god I did not voted for the current president. Oops..

  12. Nin Gatdula says:

    Will be missing Flesh Daily…

  13. Pino says:

    so that would mean na goodbye na rin sa pinoyxrated.blogspot.com?. how sad naman. hope ma implement ito ng maayos.

  14. lawrence says:

    “Advertising and selling products or services via the Internet without the consent of the recipient will likewise be fined of Php50,000 – Php250,000. Violators could also face imprisonment of one month and one day to six months.”

    This is way too vague. What will happen to small time online business sectors who are trying to make a decent living on the internet? They should not see the act as a crime, but the offenses it could bring instead, like fraud, scam, etc.

    Isn’t the internet a free space to advertise, express and communicate?? It seems to me that this bill was made by people who lack deep knowledge about how the virtual world works.

  15. alainL
    Twitter: kurogami207176
    says:

    I don’t think the Facebook thing counts. By accepting or adding you as a friend, that person is implicitly opting-in to your updates which may or may not include your items for sale.

    And regarding this clause…

    “The willful engagement, maintenance, control, or operation, directly or indirectly, or any lascivious exhbition of sexual organs or sexual activity, with the aid of a computer system, for favor or consideration.”

    I don’t think FAD will be gone. Only those sites that asks its users to pay for access. Free sites are free? :)

  16. alainL
    Twitter: kurogami207176
    says:

    Mukhang bawal na din mag connect sa mga unprotected WiFi without consent. Lagot ang mga leech. Hahaha

  17. pong says:

    Another way to get the government to become stronger and bigger. allot of people may see this as good but who’s going to enforce this… THE Government!!! not of all you are aware but this is censorship and more government control.

  18. clark says:

    this is another bs bill crafted by lawmakers who are idiots and assisted by lawyers who like to play god.

    it is very vague to say the least, parang minadali even students doing research could get imprisoned or one wrong twit could land you in jail, or even your isp provider could become liable

    then a cybersecurity?? coordinating??? council that would probably be made up of fat bureaucrats/allies who contribute more stupidity to the situation

    restricting technology is like restricting a child’s growth it cannot be stopped, best hope is to give it proper guidance, which this bill is probably not.

  19. Yikes... says:

    Nyak! Labo naman nyan. Kanino kaya pwede isumbong itong mga senador na ‘to? Meron bang bigger na governing body pagdating sa internet publishing at freedom of speech?

  20. bern says:

    How about internet piracy? is it included?

  21. budflick
    Twitter: Budflick
    says:

    masyadong broad ang terms nito. ang pag iisip ng mga nag push nitong law eh about the computers and the users. wala silang specific scenario. if you grasp the idea of the law its all about the computers pa rin and the gadgets. they dont even tackle about those using vpns and other stuffs. kahit ang advertisements eh napaka broad din. its like saying ang mga blog bawal maglagay ng ads or deals at dapat merong turn off link. ni hindi nila cguro alam na merong popup/ad blocker ang mga browser for that matter. so ung mga technician nito na unlicensed ung mga OS/software na nilalagay sa mga repaired computers eh apektado din ng bill na ito. its time to go LINUX.

  22. budflick
    Twitter: Budflick
    says:

    Sir yuga can you delete my comments here? I’m now getting a better picture so my earlier posts are invalid hehe.

    I made a summary of the bill and I hope I am right (please do correct me if im wrong):

    Section 4(a) – Computer Hacking and Security Breach.
    Section 4(b) – Digital Forgery and Online Fraud.
    Section 4(c) – Online Pornography, e-Whoring, and Unsolicited Advertisements via Electronic communications.
    Section 5 – Attempts and Assisting of the said Offenses as described in Section 4.

  23. Iyan Sommerset
    Twitter: iyansommerset
    says:

    This isn’t LAW yet, right? The best we can do is lobby the president to veto or not-sign this bill. Unless I am sorely misinformed about how our democracy works.

    • budflick
      Twitter: Budflick
      says:

      Approved, and shall effect 15 days after published in Official Gazette and 2 general-circulation newspapers :)

    • Iyan Sommerset
      Twitter: iyansommerset
      says:

      Crap.

      *rides jetpack to Sweden*

      #NothingToDoHere

    • JKisaragi says:

      I don’t think so. According to the news, the Senate had just approved this on its third reading, so that’s just one part of Congress.

      Stat Con 101: A bill approved on third reading by one House (in this case, the Senate) is transmitted to the other House (House of Representatives) for concurrence. If they (House of Representatives) approves this as well without amendment, then they’d pass this on to the Prez for his approval or veto.

      What budflick pointed out there is the “Effectivity Clause” in which the bill (or law, should it get approved by the aforementioned parties) shall take effect after publication; it being an indispensable requisite.

  24. choosyheckler says:

    Please read the bill first and let a lawyer interpret it for you before criticizing the bill! Hay naku, mga tao talaga! Yes the wordings of the bill is broad and vague. But please! Brain first before mouth.

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Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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