Stop PECB, Pakistan's Terrible Cybercrime Bill

The Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill (PECB) is being pushed through Pakistan's Parliament right now. It would give the government legal powers to censor the Net, track Internet users, criminalize computer security researchers and hand over personal data to foreign powers. Tell Pakistan's Senate to fix it now, or vote it down.

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PECB was meant to be a law to fight "cybercrime." Instead, it gives Pakistan's authorities sweeping new powers over the Internet and mobile phone systems, and criminalizes the everyday acts of innocent Internet users.

Here's what the current draft of PECB would do:

  • The government could force Internet companies to remove or block access to any "speech, sound, data, writing, image, or video," with no court approval.

  • Internet and telephone companies would be forced to keep logs on their users for a year, and give government officials access to their internal systems when served with a secret warrant.

  • Pakistan's government would be able to share any private information it discovers with any foreign spy agency, with no oversight.

  • It outlaws everyday acts of Internet expert users, including reprogramming MAC addresses, or sharing or analyzing computer vulnerabilities.

Human Rights Watch described the bill as "a clear and present danger to human rights." Business leaders and cybercrime legal experts have called the latest version "draconian."

In co-operation with the Digital Rights Foundation (DRF), we've put together a list of Pakistan politicians who use and read Twitter. Send them the message that PECB is a flawed law that needs to be scrapped.

More information

Read the bill (PDF)

Legal analysis by Privacy International (PDF)

Legal analysis by Article 19 and DRF (PDF)

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