A recent study conducted before sometime by a security group states that people are vulnerable to sharing their data or information on the internet. Sometimes it happens willingly or by unawareness. The study reveals that half of the population of UAE share their photos and contact details on the internet, approx. 40% share their private details and some of them also share their serious financial information.

The consequences of them lead to suffering financial loss, reputation damage and, to some extent it affects their private relationships too. To intend the seriousness of the issue UAE govt has taken serious steps to protect their civilians' public and personal information. Recently UAE govt states that according to federal penal code no 380 checking or accessing a person’s phone without permission is a crime that can lead to imprisonment and a hectic fine.

According to Federal Decree-Law No.7 contained in 380(bis) of the penal code: -

“Any person who unlawfully distributes or provides others with the contents of a telephone call, message information, data or other issues which came to his knowledge by his work shall be punished by a jail sentence.” It means that if anyone opens someone’s letter and tries to eavesdrop on the telephone call other than to whom it is sent, it is a punishable offence and it can lead that person to pay a fine not less than 3000 Dirhams.

Other than that, if somebody discloses a private or personal letter, telephone call or cable to somebody else rather than to whom it needs to be conveyed without the consent of the sender, it is also a punishable offence. It could be imprisonment for a period of at least three months or can end up by paying a fine of 5000 Dirhams.

These new rules of the UAE laws will empower them to take strict action against these types of offenders who are suspected of these crimes Article 380 also states the strict prohibition of the unlawful divulgence of someone’s belongings and personal info related to his or her work. Similarly, Article 378 added one more layer to the privacy protection law by making that person responsible who breaches the private and personal life of a particular person without the person’s consent and against UAE law.

Some of the acts under this crime are as follows: -
  • If somebody records or transfers the conversation that happens in a private place through a phone, recorder or any other device
  • If somebody clicks or captures a snapshot of any person in a private place without any consent.

The UAE Penal Code also set down some sanctions for bringing out any kind of news, pictures and any comment related to someone’s private and personal life no matter if it is true or not.

According to article 31 of the UAE’s constitution “the people of UAE have freedom of communication via post, cable or other means of communication and guarantees their privacy, so in the path of that, if you also divulge the confidential information of any business or you are using that information for your personal benefits, it will also result in you in serious penalties like imprisonment or fine according to UAE penal code. These laws also include that checking your spouse phone without his/her permission is also against the UAE laws.

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