BSP, MWSS sites hacked to protest Cybercrime Law

Hackers calling themselves “Anonymous Philippines” defaced the web sites of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) on Wednesday, September 26, to protest the new Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.

The hackers said the law “effectively ends” freedom of expression in the Philippines and called for a revision of the law that punishes online libel.

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Opposition to the draconian law has been building up over these past few days, with representatives from the media, legal and blogging communities filing petitions at the Supreme Court questioning the constitutionality of Republic Act 10175.

Going over the law, I must say that aside from violating the freedom of expression, the law also violates due process and even rules of evidence since it allows the accumulation of data on a suspected cyber criminal even without a court order. The order only comes after law enforcers decide that a person has violated the law (Section 12). That’s tantamount to illegal surveillance.

In a country where some politicians are able to muzzle some members of the press with libel cases, threats and intimidation, the Cybercrime Law only reinforces their capability to effectively stifle dissent and intrusion into their suspicious activities. It would also probably nip the already growing and blooming field of citizen-journalism in the country.

Quo vadis Philippines?