De Lima says nothing unconstitutional with Cybercrime Law

October 3, 2012 9:54 pm 

MANILA, Oct. 3 — Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Leila M. De Lima on Wednesday said there is nothing unconstitutional about the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.

President Benigno S. Aquino III signed into law Republic Act No. 10175, otherwise known as the “Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012,” which took effect Wednesday.

“I refuse to state at this point that there are unconstitutional provisions. Doon sa pagbasa ko ng batas, wala pa akong nakita doon na pwedeng sabihing unconstitutional,” De Lima told reporters in an ambush interview Wednesday.

De Lima also assured the public that they will thoroughly study the law and take into consideration feedbacks from various agencies in crafting the implementing rules and regulations (IRR).

“We will determine how the IRR can be used in terms of clarifying, harmonizing those objectionable portions,” De Lima said.

"Lilinawin sa IRR yung standards, yung parameters, yung proseso," De Lima added.

To date, there are now eight petitions filed before the Supreme Court (SC) questioning several provisions of R.A. No. 10175.

Some of these provisions are:

— Section 4 (a)(3), which includes data interference, defined as "the intentional or reckless alteration, damaging, deletion or deterioration of computer data, electronic document, or electronic data message, without right, including the introduction or transmission of viruses," in the list of cybercrime offenses;

— Section 4(b)(3), which lists computer-related identity theft, defined as the intentional acquisition, use, misuse, transfer, possession, alteration or deletion of identifying information belonging to another, as one of computer-related offenses;

— Section 4(c)(4), which criminalizes libel, not only on the internet, but also on "any other similar means which may be devised in the future";

— Section 6, which raises by one degree higher the penalties provided for by the Revised Penal Code for all crimes committed through and with the use of information and communications;

— Section 7, which provides that, apart from prosecution under the law, any person charged for the alleged offense covered will not be spared from violations of the Revised Penal Code and other special laws;

— Section 12, which authorizes the real-time collection of traffic data;

— Section 17, which authorizes service providers and law enforcement agencies to "completely destroy the computer data subject of a preservation and examination" order;

— Section 19, which authorizes the DOJ to block access to computer data when such data "is prima facie found to be in violation of the provisions of this Act;" and

— Section 20, which states that those who fail to comply with provisions of Chapter IV (Enforcement and Implementation), specifically orders from law enforcement agencies, shall face imprisonment of prision correctional (6 months and 1 day to 6 years) in its maximum period or a fine of P100,000 or both, for each non-compliance. (PNA)

FPV/PTR/JCF

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