Qatar Cyber Crime Law: MoI holds Virtual Awareness Seminar on Prevention of Financial and Cyber Crimes
Is it to safe to save the details of your credit card information in websites for online purchases? What if a scammer is impersonating you on social media and trying to collect money from your contacts using your account? Is it illegal for hotels to request for details or get a copy of your credit card?
Those are just some of the questions raised by the participants of the recently concluded seminar hosted by the Ministry of Interior (MoI). Read on to find out the Ministry's answers to these questions.
The Public Relations Department of the MoI have organized two virtual awareness seminars through Zoom Video Conferencing to underline its commitment to continue communication and interaction with different segments of the society.
The officers from the Community Policing, Human Rights and Financial and Cyber Crimes Prevention Departments shared valuable information related with the functions and services of each department to enhance the security awareness among the public.
Here are the topics discussed during the seminars:
• Services of Community Policing and Human Rights Departments
This online seminar was held last Jan 31, 2021. It was presented by the Community Policing Department and Human Rights Department. To check the highlights of the seminar on the above topic,
• MoI Virtual Awareness Seminar on the Prevention of Financial and Cyber Crimes
On February 1st, the Financial and Cyber Crimes Prevention Department and the General Directorate of Criminal Investigation Economic & Cyber Crimes Combating Department of MoI, organized another seminar highlighting Cyber Crime Law in Qatar.
Spearheaded by First Lieutenant Eng. Abdulaziz Mohamed Al-Kaabi, the seminar gathered a total of 383 participants.
The following are the highlights of this seminar:
• What is Cyber Crime?
The cybercrime as defined by Qatari Law No. 14 of 2014 Cyber Crime Prevention Law is any act of involving an unlawful use of an information technology techniqye, an information system or the Internet illegally, in violation of the provisions of this Law.
• Services of Economic and Cyber Crimes Combating Department
The Economic and Cyber Crimes Combating Department is one of the latest departments of MoI, which was establlished in late 2018 to cope with the significant increase in the use of technology, which in turn is reflected in the emergence of crimes in the digital world. As currently, the case has grown into that as most of the crimes are connected to cyber crime.
The Department mainly collects inferences, investigates, probes and searches for perpetrators with the use of the latest tools, programs and methods to track down the perpetrators and reach their real identities via the internet. The Department is also responsible for monitoring all that would violate the law or security of cyberspace.
The department receives complaints from the public and companies and then proceeds with its policing work in collecting inferences to find out the perpetrator.
Types of Cyber Crime
MoI believes that the increasing dependence on information technology has led to the emergence of new potentials and opportunities for cultural, social, economic, political and legal development. However, there has been an increase in digital risks because of bad and irresponsible use of these technologies. The continuous increase in the number of Internet users and the steady increase in the transfer of business to the digital environment has also led to an increase in the number of users who may become victims of cyber risks. Hence, MoI sees that most of the traditional crimes have moved to the digital environment, for example, but not limited to:
2. Fraud of all kinds
3. Threat and blackmail
4. Sexual exploitation of children
5. Spreading rumors
Penalties for Cyber Crimes in Qatar
The penalties in Law No. 14 of 2014, the Cyber Crime Prevention Law in the country vary according to the offense, ranging from 6 months to five years imprisonment and fines ranging from QAR 10,000 to 500,000.
Law No. 14 of 2014 the Cyber Crime Prevention Law
The law can also be viewed the Ministry of Justice's Almeezan website, which contains all the laws and legislation of the state:
Here are some of the questions from the participants that were answered by Ministry officials during the seminar on Cyber Crime Law:
Is it to safe to save the details of your credit card information in websites for online purchases?
The answer is: No. According to First Lieutenant Al-Kaabi, it is not safe to save credit card information even in trusted websites. One must be cautious especially when receiving anonymous calls or messages.
What if a scammer is impersonating you on social media and trying to collect money from your contacts using your account?
The MoI official advised that the victim has to report to the cyber crime department if there is someone who created a social media account and impersonating your identity by using your own photos and details and doing some illegal practices on your behalf. Legal action must be taken enable to stop the perpetrator.
Is it illegal for hotels to request for details or get a copy of your credit card?
"Hotel must not have a copy of credit card because that is actually wrong. They must not take all information. You can tell them that by law it is illegal and, you can't take all the details," said the MoI official.
How to Combat Cyber Crimes?
- Prevention and awareness are the basic line to address cyber crime. When following best practices in business, and raising public awareness of its dangers and methods of prevention, then crime can be effectively addressed.
- However, when the crime occurs, we see that the speed of reporting takes an important factor in the success of the evidence gathering process, as digital evidence is subject to loss and manipulation.
- The department carries out awareness campaigns on an ongoing basis targeting all types of people.
According to Faisal Al Huwadi of MoI’s Public Relations Department, it is best to approach the Cyber Crime Investigation Department (CID) in person rather than sending emails to take action immediately on your concern. He facilitated the seminars and called on the participants to spread awareness on the Cyber Crime law in Qatar for everyone’s safety and security.
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