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

  • Cambodia’s image problem

    In opening remarks at a recent event, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Luy David said information can be a double-edged sword. He told a European Institute of Asian Studies (EIAS) briefing seminar that the media has unfairly presented

  • PM Hun Sen says dangers averted

    Delivering a campaign speech from his home via Facebook Live on Thursday, caretaker Prime Minister Hun Sen said his Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) had carried the country through danger in its latest mandate. He was specifically referring to the threat of a “colour revolution”

  • Bumpy road for local ride apps

    Ride-hailing services seem to have grown into a dominant player in the capital’s transportation sector. Relatively unknown and little used in the Kingdom at the beginning of this year, services like PassApp, Grab and ExNet are now commonplace on Phnom Penh streets. However, the

  • Hun Sen lays out party’s platform

    Caretaker Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday credited liberating Cambodia from the Khmer Rouge as among the reasons why people will vote for his ruling Cambodian People Party (CPP) in the July 29 national elections. Hun Sen, who has held the reins of power in Cambodia