Cyberbully had an issue in Malaysia but it was never been properly addressed with due to the absence of any specific laws to deal with it.
However, all of those would have changed following the initiative by the Malaysia Cybersecurity Outreach and Capacity Building, where they are drafting laws to combat cyberbullying.
According to Bernama, the President of Malaysia Cybersecurity Outreach and Capacity Building, Lt Col ® Mustaffa Ahmad said the laws and prosecution process for cyberbullying will no longer be based on other acts, including Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1988 (Improper use of network facilities) as is being practised currently.
“Cyberbullying is quite rampant these days, in 2020 Cybersecurity received 596 reports of cyberbullying or harassment compared to 201 reports in 2019. For 2021, as of July, we have received 267 reports.” he said, at a cyber ethics programme organised live on its YouTube channel.
The Cybersecurity Malaysia is a national cybersecurity agency under the Communications and Multimedia Ministry (MCMC).
In the programme, Mustaffa said that the public should practice self-restraint, civility and empathy towards other people and understand the concept of a digital footprint in order to more effectively combat cyberbullying, and not just rely on the law.
“A digital footprint are traces left behind by every user whenever they surf the Internet, so be careful of what you surf because everything can be known and it will be used as source to bully you.” he said.
Meanwhile, he said that cyberbullying is a deliberate action by an individual or entities through digital communication with the intent to cause anxiety, physical, psychological, economic, academic harm to the victim.
Examples of cyberbullying includes spreading videos, using fake profiles, sending harassing messages, spreading fake news or slander and insulting comments.
“If you face cyber harassment, you are advised to report it to the police, take a screenshot of the harassment, set your privacy settings in social media, share it with people you trust and do not respond to the bully.” Mustaffa said.
At the same time, Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia, ICT and Islamic Research Cluster chief Prof Dr Mohamad Fauzan Noordin urge Malaysians to stop cyberbullying, especially for the Muslims as they should always act based on what is taught in the Quaran.
“For example, the Surah Al-Hujarat contains advice such as ‘fa ashlihu’,which is to be at peace with each other, ‘La yaghtab’; to not slander each other and ‘fatabbayyanu’, which is to investigate whatever news you receive.” he said.
If you are a victim of cyberbullying, you can lodge a report of cyberbullying to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, besides to the police. Meanwhile, Kasih 15999 hotline, Mercy Malaysia, Befrienders and social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram as well as cyber999, will be there for you too.
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Watch the full live broadcast here: