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Avoid Spreading False News to Avoid a Fine of AED 1,000,000

Security in the UAE

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has always been a place of security and safety, regardless if it’s on the internet or not. The government has always had the best interests of the community at heart.

Because of its goal to always make the millions of residents in the UAE, the government does not ever take any crime lightly. A crime is always dealt with by the government and its task forces regardless of its high or low degree.

The UAE has proven itself to be serious about ensuring the safety of people and maintaining order and security by always having the latest technologies and training. The government has always plans and initiatives with regard to safety and security.

What is Federal Law No. 5 of 2012 All About?

In the year 2012, the President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, released a new law that combats crime over the internet. It was called Federal Law No. 5 of 2012 or the New Cyber Crime Law. It was a new and complete law that is about opposing cybercrimes and what it brings.

Aside from protecting the information and data of people that they have online, such as bank account statements, credit card numbers, and other private and confidential details of people, there is also an article in there that prohibits people from spreading false news.

In Article 29 of Federal Law No. 5 of 2012 or the New Cyber Crime Law, it states “Shall be punished by temporary imprisonment and a fine, not in excess of one million dirhams whoever publishes information, news, statements or rumors on a website or any computer network or information technology means with intent to make sarcasm or damage the reputation, prestige or stature of the State or any of its institutions or its president, vice-president, any of the rulers of the Emirates, their crown princes, or the deputy rulers of the Emirates, the State flag, the national peace, its logo, national anthem or any of its symbols.”

Basically, it is prohibited to disperse news online that are untrue and can damage the integrity and reputation of the State. This means that you cannot simply share any news that you’ve read online through social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp), email, etc. if they are not supported. When found to be guilty, one can face a jail term and a fine of AED 1,000,000.

However, even if you shared the correct news but it is violating someone else’ privacy, you can still be held liable for that action and you can be penalized. This is also in Article 21 (3) of the same Law.

What Do You Need to Do?

It is not uncommon for us to see news all over our feed on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. We even have other people forwarding us messages on WhatsApp, Messenger, etc. about certain news in the country. Some of them are sketchy because they do not necessarily belong to websites of well-known news platforms in the country. When you come across this, you should really do a quick research before forwarding it to anybody else. If you couldn’t find it anywhere on any of the government’s social media platforms or on their websites, there is a huge chance that it’s a hoax news and fake. Forwarding that news may land you in jail and face huge fines.

It may be a good way to banter about fake news or the possibility of certain rumors to come true but doing it online and passing those links is a risk that you shouldn’t take at all. Even if it may seem as genuine as any news can be, an instant check of its legitimacy may help you to avoid a jail term.

Legal Consultants in Dubai

HHS Lawyers & Legal Consultants in Dubai has been operating for 10 years now and helping people to deal with their legal concerns and matters for them to understand them more. As one of the leading law firms in Dubai, our experience will ensure you that we give nothing but excellent and quality service to our clients.

Our team has tackled various kinds of legal cases, and we can help you with. Our approach is composed of professionalism and tact that we believe should be the case for every matter at hand.

We are always in the loop with any changes to the rules and regulations and laws in the country. The information that we can provide to you for your questions is all based on updated data as we are up-to-date individuals. This is why we can advise you about your predicament to your own advantage.

If you’d like to discuss your legal concerns with us, please contact us today and book a consultation with one of our lawyers in Dubai.

Hassan Humaid Al Suwaidi., LL.B. is a Senior Partner in HHS Lawyers. He has 20 years of experience dealing with high-value and complex cases. Frequently featured in local and international legal directories and commended for his ability to attain favorable outcomes for clients, Hassan has been involved in some of the largest legal settlements. A major part of his work is providing expert legal advice on UAE legislation and acting for individuals and businesses during disputes and litigation.