The recommendation comes in the wake of fake news which jeopardized several LGUs’ vaccination drives.
A law that limits each person’s online presence to just one social media account – for the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), such a mandate would help curb cybercrime cases, a figure that shot up as more people shifted their transactions online amid the pandemic.
Victor Lorenzo, chief of the NBI’s Cybercrime Division, said on Tuesday that, aside from such a law, the proposed measure requiring the registration of prepaid Subscriber Identity Module or SIM cards, which has been pending before the Senate and House of Representatives since January, can also aid in the same.
“Malaking tulong sa law enforcement perspective ‘yung one person, one social media account. Malaki ring tulong ‘yung SIM [Card] Registration Act natin,” said Lorenzo in an interview on OneNews’ Agenda.
“Ang traditional crimes bumaba siya pero ang [mga kaso ng] cybercrime nadoble… Ngayon pati ‘yung scams before ay person-to-person ang meet up niyan kaya lang ngayon online na lahat. Lahat ng klaseng krimen gumagamit na ngayon ng computers at internet,” he also noted.
Considering the technical component of such crimes, Lorenzo admitted that the bureau has been bogged down by its lack of equipment and labor, causing cybercrime cases to collect.
“That’s a challenge for us in terms of manpower and in terms of equipment, but the NBI is doing everything to beef up our capability to keep up with the volume of work being handled by the NBI cybercrime division,” Lorenzo claimed.
Lorenzo also suggested that the same could prove helpful in tracking down those who spread fake news, the kind which caused a commotion in several vaccination sites a day before lockdown started last Friday, August 6. According to reports, a social media post claiming that those who haven’t gotten their vaccine jabs will not be entitled to receive financial aid. This caused people to troop to vaccination sites in droves, defeating the purpose of the lockdown to contain the virus.
“We think this is not the concerted effort of one group, it’s either several people, a group of friends or maybe only one person [handling multiple accounts to spread false information],” Lorenzo stated.
“What we are looking at here is just nuisance. [Someone] wants to piss off [people] and see the result out of curiosity. That’s the motive of someone who wants to annoy people, or those who spread fake news,” he added.
With this pronouncement, the bureau now joins Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III in the same boat. It was last July when the lawmaker voiced his belief that no one should be allowed to maintain multiple Facebook accounts to avoid the adverse effects that “trolls” could have during the upcoming election.
“There should be a call, not only by government but people na ang Facebook dapat patinuin… Hindi pupuwede ‘yung tatlo apat ang account mo… walang ginawa kundi magmura. Hindi ba? Hindi maganda ‘yon,” Sotto said to OneNews.
According to Facebook’s community standards and usage policies, having more than one personal account is prohibited. However, the social media site failed to outline any action it would take against those who violate this rule.
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