The Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) will not spy on Malaysians as part of its joint operation with the police to monitor those accessing explicit content online.
This was explained by Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo today.
“The MCMC will not conduct any spying or surveillance on all internet users.
“What the MCMC will do is help when there are requests from the police or other law enforcement agencies. That is the extent of the commission’s role,” he said when asked during a press conference in Shah Alam.
The New Straits Times reported this week that Bukit Aman had set up a unit - the Malaysia Internet Crime Against Children Investigation Unit (Micac) - with software specifically developed to identify, locate and track visits to pornographic sites, especially those involving child pornography.
In the report, the police were quoted as saying that Micac would be working closely with the MCMC.
Gobind further referred to a recent statement by the MCMC in which it clarified its role in the Bukit Aman-led operation.
“In general, MCMC does not monitor websites and online content accessed by Malaysians.
“[...] However, based on complaints, MCMC will investigate and gather information on any alleged breach of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 and other laws of the country,” the statement read.
Information gathered by the MCMC will then be handed over to law enforcement or the Attorney General’s Chambers for further action, the agency explained.
The police previously told NST that offenders detected by Micac could be questioned or arrested in their homes. Their phones and electronic devices can also be seized.
Quoting Bukit Aman's Sexual, Women and Child Investigation Division (D11) principal assistant director Ong Chin Lan, the report said police would be working closely with the MCMC.
“We will pick up those who visit these sites regularly. We use a software that was specially developed to allow us to identify, locate and track visits to porn sites, especially those involving child porn.
“The intelligence we get will be passed on to the MCMC, so we can obtain the internet users’ details," she was quoted as saying.