Islamabad-Most of us are clueless when it comes to cyber security, with the rapid growth of the

internet and internet users, a plethora of precautions and laws prevailing in the country should be learnt and used. From cyber stalking to posting pictures without the other’s consent, nearly everyone has been knowingly and un-knowingly been a victim of these crimes without knowing that certain actions could’ve been taken against those acts. One thing which is always going on un-noticed or not being taken seriously; is that Pakistan has worked and made laws against cyber

crimes to actually secure the web zone and keep the criminals at bay. Let’s take a peek at some of the laws. Spreading false information or tarnishing the reputation of the other can lead to three years of imprisonment or up to one million of fine or both. So be careful of what you say about others in cyber world, media firms licensed by the PEMRA ordinance 2002 are exempt from this. 

If a person continuously spams you with emails, phone calls whereas you have specifically asked them not to do so, and if he/she continues to do so, as much that it amounts to harassment, this would fall into the category of “cyber stalking” which is a crime punishable by imprisonment or fine up to one million or both.

Taking pictures or videos and distributing them without consent is also a cyber crime and surmounts to three years of jail time or fine up to one million rupees or both. Hate speech on the internet is also a crime, so if anyone posts remarks on the internet which can lead to extreme disturbance in the country e.g. interfaith, sectarian or racial hatred, it will amount to a crime punishable for up to seven years, monetary fine or both.

Hacking computers or phones is also a crime and the perpetrator can be jailed for three years and a fine of one million rupees could be imposed or both fine and imprisonment. Using someone’s identity e.g. people making fake Facebook accounts while using another’s identity is also a crime and that person can be jailed for three years or fine up to one million or both it falls into the category of identity theft. Using someone’s cell phone or laptop without their consent is also a crime and the person doing so can be jailed for three months or fine of fifty thousand rupees or both. The list goes on and on, which also deals with cyber terrorism, electronic fraud, electronic forgery, and cyber spamming etc. So we should all be aware of the fact that there are laws governing the cyber world and the crimes committed therein, and we should immediately report the crime if we or someone we know becomes a victim to it.

–The writer is a freelance contributor and a lawyer.