January 30, 2012
SENATE PASSES CYBERCRIME PREVENTION ACT
Senator Edgardo J. Angara expressed optimism that Filipinos will be assured a safer cyberspace as the Senate approves upon third reading the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 (Senate Bill No. 2796).
Filed by Angara, Chair of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, the Cybercrime Prevention Act establishes a legal framework for the investigation, apprehension and prosecution of cybercriminals.
"I laud my colleagues in the Senate for acting quickly on this measure," said Angara, also Chair of the Congressional Commission on Science & Technology and Engineering (COMSTE). "Their approval sends out a clear message that the Philippines is taking decisive steps not only in safeguarding its digital space, but also in assuring its transition into a full-fledged knowledge-based economy."
By designating which legal authorities are responsible and appropriating P50 million for its implementation, the measure protects Filipino Web-surfers from such Internet-related crimes as online theft, fraud, hacking, cyber-squatting and child pornography.
The bill also provides for the creation of new government agencies such as the Office of Cybercrime under the Department of Justice (DOJ); a National Cyber Security Center (NCSC) under the Information and Communications Technology Office of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-ICTO); and a National Cybersecurity Coordinating Council (NCCC) under the Office of the President.
"The bill will have to undergo bicameral review before it becomes national law, but I am optimistic that our counterparts in the House of Representatives will act as decisively," explained the veteran lawmaker.
The Cybercrime Prevention Act is one of the triad of ICT measures authored by Angara and being pushed by COMSTE in support among other things for the Information Technology and Business Process Outsourcing (IT-BPO) industry in the country.
Other ICT-related measures pending in the Senate are the Data Privacy Act and the measure creating a Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).
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