Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cybercrime law’s status uncertain

Cybercrime law’s status uncertain

Cybercrime law’s status uncertain

A Ministry of Commerce official said in a speech last week that the controversial draft cybercrime law was almost ready to appear before the National Assembly, though another government official dismissed this yesterday.

At a conference on cybersecurity attended by representatives of the public and private sector, including corporate officers from Microsoft, Commerce Ministry Secretary of State Pan Sorasak said the draft law was nearing the final hurdle before being implemented.

“Cambodia is in the process of finalising ... the cyber law,” Sorasak told the room. “It has been reviewed by the Council of Ministers, and it’s ready to be passed on and to be adopted by the National Assembly.”

But the secretive draft law, which was leaked to the public in April, has not yet been reviewed by the Council of Ministers, council spokesman Phay Siphan said yesterday. In fact, the council has yet to hold a meeting about the draft or even see a finished version of it, he added.

“We don’t have anything to finalise,” Siphan said yesterday when asked about Sorasak’s comment. “So far, we don’t have anything that’s official.”

Sorasak could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Siphan directed a Post reporter to Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak to find out how close the draft was to being passed. Sopheak also could not be reached.

When leaked to the public about six months ago, articles that set criminal penalties – including several years in prison for online publications that “undermined the integrity of any government agencies” and content that “devalues the moral of family values” – concerned civil society organisations.

Pech Pisey, director of programs for Transparency International Cambodia, who said he thinks the government should be more open regarding the cybercrimes draft, yesterday said they should also have better communication between ministries.

“It’s hard sometimes to make any meaningful dialogue, because they don’t seem to know what’s going on between ministries,” Pisey said.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY EDDIE MORTON

MOST VIEWED

  • Sihanoukville building collapse death toll rises to 19

    Minister of Interior Sar Kheng said on Sunday that the government will act against those responsible for the collapse of a seven-storey building in Sihanoukville on Saturday, which resulted in 19 dead and 24 injured as of Sunday evening. Sar Kheng said three Chinese nationals and one

  • Gov’t to probe Chinese exports to US via Sihanoukville

    The government is investigating allegations that Chinese companies are using Chinese-owned special economic zones in Cambodia to export goods to the US and avoid tariffs, said Ministry of Commerce spokesman Seang Thay. The move comes after US embassy spokesman Arend Zwartjes said the US had

  • Banh: The Khmer Rouge worse than sanctions and pressure

    Minister of National Defence Tea Banh said on Thursday that having sanctions and external pressure placed on Cambodia was not worse than life under the brutal Khmer Rouge regime. Tea Banh, who is also deputy prime minister, was speaking to military and ruling party officials

  • Funcinpec ‘set to sell their headquarters’, says source

    An anonymous source from Funcinpec said acting president Prince Norodom Chakravuth had held a meeting with other officials to discuss selling several of the party headquarters across the country while the party president Prince Norodom Ranariddh receives medical treatment at the Royal Phnom Penh Hospital