3 laws hurt antichild porn drive | Inquirer News
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3 laws hurt antichild porn drive

/ 05:28 AM September 03, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Chamber of Telecom Operators (PCTO), which include telco giants PLDT Co. and Globe Telecom, is calling on the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Congress to reconcile conflicting provisions in various laws to help in the fight against child pornography.

In a position paper submitted to the DOJ last August 25, the PCTO argued that the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, the Data Privacy Act of 2012 and the Anti-Cybercrime Act of 2012 prevented them from monitoring online traffickers of child pornography.

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But the chamber said its members would continue to fulfill their duty under the anti-child pornography law, or Republic Act 9775, to block child pornographic websites, but pointed out that Section 9 of the law contained “evidently conflicting statements.”

Section 9 requires ISPs, among other things, to notify authorities within seven days from discovery of any internet address which may contain any form of child pornography and “install available technology program or software” to block or filter access to or transmittal of child pornography.

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But the section also states that “nothing in this section may be construed to require an ISP to engage in the monitoring of any user, subscriber or customer or the content of any communication of any such person.”

This “in effect nullifies and prevents ISPs from performing their duties imposed by Section 9,” PCTO pointed out.

PCTO said the Data Privacy Act, or RA 10173, also imposed “strict” responsibilities on entities that collect or process personal information of customers “practically supplanting the duties imposed on ISPs under RA 9775.”

PCTO also pointed out that under the Anti-Cybercrime Law, or RA 11075, “ISPs are not allowed to actively monitor content as it violates the right to privacy of communication and correspondence which is only allowed upon lawful order of a court.”

“We urge the (DOJ) to consider amending RA 9775 to rectify the statutory conflicts identified above, taking into account the paramount objective of protecting the welfare of children who are victims of child pornography and online sexual abuse,” the organization said.

The other members of PCTO are Bayantel, Capwire, Digitel, Eastern Telecommunications, Extelcom, Innove Communications, Philcom Corp., the Private Association of Private Telecom Companies, PT&T, Piltel and Telecommunications Technologies of the Philippines.

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TAGS: anti-child porn drive, anti-cybercrime act, Data Privacy Act, PCTO, Philippine Chamber of Telecom Operators
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