Hong Kong Passes Anti-Doxxing Law, Activists Say it will Stifle Dissent

Pro-democracy activists are worried that this law will be misused to stifle dissent and suppress peaceful protests.

1 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>Riot police cover themselves with shields as hundreds of protesters march along a downtown street during a pro-democracy protest against Beijings national security legislation in Hong Kong on Sunday, May 24, 2020.</p></div>

The legislative assembly of Hong Kong on 30th September issued a controversial law that gave the Office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data sweeping powers to launch investigations and prosecute doxxing, Reuters reported.

Doxxing is defined as the act of revealing to the public any information about an individual or group that was previously kept as private.

Human rights' activists and organisations that are pro-democracy or anti-China are worried that this law will be misused to stifle dissent and suppress protests.

The Privacy Commissioner, using this law, is permitted to access phones, laptops and others devices of the person under investigation, with no need for a warrant.

It also has the power to either delete online content or block access to it for Hong Kong users, regardless of which part of the world the content is coming from.

Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Secretary Erick Tsang said that the law is necessary as doxxing divides society.

Other supporters of the law claim that the law should have been brought into action long back due to the problems that arose during the massive pro-democracy movement that had rocked Hong Kong in 2019, the Reuters report added.

They also say that during those protests, home addresses of police officers and information regarding their children's schools were made public by protesters which had lead to the families of those officers receiving regular threats.

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Edited By :Padmashree Pande
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