87% of Filipino Internet users have been victims of cybercrimes–DOJ

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MANILA, Philippines — Almost 9 out of 10 Filipino Internet users have been victimized by cybercrime or a malicious activity on the Internet at one time or another, the Department of Justice (DOJ) primer on facts and trends about cybercrimes committed in the country, said on Tuesday.

The primer on Philippine cybercrime has been prepared by the DOJ as part of its advocacy program to prevent abuses in cyberspace as the legality of the new law against cybercrime is being deliberated in the Supreme Court.

In October 2012, the implementation of the new Cyber-crime Prevention Act of 2012 was suspended by the high tribunal for four months until Feb.6 following 15 petitions seeking for the law to be declared unconstitutional wholly or partially. The high court is set to hear on Jan.15 oral arguments on the law that became controversial because of its provisions that included the criminalization of online libel.

In the three-page primer presented in a question and answer format, the DOJ said that cybercrime has become “one of the fastest growing crimes globally.”

In the Philippines, the primer quoted a 2010 report of the security software firm Symantec that as many as 87 percent of Filipino internet users (nearly nine out of 10) were identified as victims of crimes and malicious activities committed online. These included being victimized in activities such as malware (virus and Trojan) invasion; online or phishing scams; sexual predation; and services in social networking site like Facebook and Twitter.

From 2003 to 2012, the Anti-Transnational Crime Division (ATCD) of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) looked into 2,778 referred cases of computer crimes from government agencies and private individuals nationwide.

The primer defined cybercrime as a crime committed “with or through the use of information and communication technologies such as radio, television, cellullar phone, computer and network, and other communication device or application.”

Quoting the 2001 Budapest Convention on Cybercrime, the primer said there were four types of cybercrime — offenses against the confidentiality, integrity and availability of computer data systems; computer-related offenses; content-related offenses and offenses related to infringements of copyright and related rights.

The primer also noted that the first cybercrime case in the country was the controversial case involving Onel de Guzman who in 2000 released the “I Love You” virus.

“The case filed against De Guzman was dismissed at the first stage because there was no law punishing the deed as of that time in May 2000 in the Philippines,” it said.

The primer also said that two cybercriminals had been convicted for hacking under Republic Act no. 8792 or the Electronic Commerce Act or the E-Commerce Act. The first conviction involved a person caught hacking the government portal gov.ph and other government websites while the other involved a person who used the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) call center provider Sitel Philippines Corporation to illegally secure credit card information from the company’s sister firm, Sitel USA.

Since the new law against cybercrime has been suspended, the government is dealing with cybercrime-related cases using existing laws such as the E-Commerce Act, RA 9995 or the Anti-Photo and Voyeurism Act of 2009, RA 9725 or the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, RA 9208 or the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003, RA 8484 or the Access Device Regulation Act of 1998 and RA 4200 or the Anti-Wire Tapping Law.

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/AHJZHKGAOD3KB6T6K5Z3MYBTWI undisclosed

    This kind of general statement from the DOJ is totally
    useless, probably even invented. It does not matter wherever you are in the
    world, no matter what country, if you don’t have proper software to protect
    your computer and your personal details on your computer then it is your fault.
    It is also your responsibility to know how to be computer savvy on where or
    what business you do on the net. The basic rule on doing business on the net is:
    If you are not sure, don’t do it. This is an alarmist general statement from
    the government with no details to back up their statement. The fact is that even
    with the laws in place, there is very little that the government can do to deal
    with these so-called cybercrimes, especially if the perpetrators are overseas. Real
    criminals on the net are anonymous and mobile. The government can hardly keep
    up with the earthbound crimes that are a daily occurrence in this country. The
    truth is that the government does not have the resources and experts to deal
    with cybercrimes. THE REAL REASON WHY OUR POLITICIANS ARE SO KEEN ON THIS LAW IS BECAUSE THEY CAN USE IT AS A WEAPON AGAINST ANYONE WHO MIGHT REPORT THEM OF WRONGDOING. IT WILL LIKELY BE USED BY POLITICIANS AND CORRUPT INTITIES IN GOVERNMENT TO INTEMEDATE ANYONE FROM EXPOSING THEM FOR VARIOUS ANOMALIES. The real purpose of this law is to silence and intimidate the critics.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NWTWAWQO7MWPOD75YHMUCR2IWU Mux

    I really wonder why the Inquirer allows articles like this? Do they think their readers are clueless as to how computers work as they are? Christine Avendaño, I suggest you take a few courses in IT before writing such articles. A little research will do you good. This is just like the article posted here a few weeks ago about getting viruses from pirated software. As if legit software has built in anti-virus protection. Come on! 

  • http://twitter.com/LuciusBarbatus Butch Cabanban

    I wonder what kind of crimes 87% of Filipinos have bee victimized with.  The DOJ owes it to the public to explain how they arrived at that figure other than relying on the self serving statement of a software company.  Scare tactics.

  • kismaytami

    LOLS! As if naman na Symantec lang ang anti-virus product na available sa Pinas.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/SHJZR76LIZ3P6EC3DHL5RKXKAU Sargo

    Symantec ang source, syempre Anti virus company yan eh di eexagerate nila para mabenta product nilang overpriced. DOJ use your brains.

  • i_am_filipino

    So 87 percents are cybercriminals too by downloading illegal materials from illegal malwares and got victimized by the same.. You are safe if you are not downloading illegal materials or visiting illegal sites

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000439297851 Ash Schneider

    87%.. wtf!!

    Kasama ba dito yung mga engot na nakakadownload ng viruses/trojans/malwares ng hindi nila nalalaman? Considered ba as Cybercrime yun? :p :poop:

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/Q63DUTCNJJKCYNURT4A4C6QZJM marco

    my family friends were victims of this crime….the culprit have even the balls to sue them…in the end, the judge ruled out…… the case was dismissed due to “no grounds and proofs for the case rather, merely, assumptions. 

    These people still continue to harassed others. I hope they will be penalized.

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