We heavily invest on hardware and software, and to IT support personnel. But how do we deal with persons who initiate acts that compromise our IT infrastructure? How do we deal with persons who hack our system? How about those who spread malware like the “I love you” virus that heavily harm computer networks in the world? How about those who invade our intellectual property right?As much as there is a need to act on street crimes, there is also a great need to act on cybercrimes.
Clarence Mongado, an IT senior student from Cebu Institute of Technology, explores on IT-related laws and enactments in the Philippines. He generously shared to me some insights as his research progresses.
Clarence mentions the “Electronic Commerce Act of 2000” or Republic Act No. 8792 which “aims to facilitate domestic and international dealings, transactions, arrangements, agreements, contracts and exchanges and storage of information through the utilization of electronic, optical and similar medium, mode, instrumentality and technology to recognize the authenticity and reliability of electronic documents related to such activities and to promote the universal use of electronic transaction in the government and general public.” [ref1]
Republic Act No. 8792 was enacted after the “response to the global devastation of computer networks brought about by the “I Love You” virus suspected to have originated from the Philippines, the Philippine IT Law Journal [ref2] says. It added: “the law was hailed by observers as a landmark piece of legislation that finally placed the Philippines on the map of electronic commerce.”
It is worthy to note that the Philippines immediately respond on the issue. However, as e-commerce and cybertechnology progress, our laws and policy must also evolve.
Other related Philippine laws on Information technology are Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines ( R.A. 8293) [ref3] and Optical Media Act of 2003 (RA 9239) [ref4]. These laws safeguard the stakeholders in IT industry, thus positioning the Philippines in IT competitiveness in Asia Pacific Region and in the world as a whole.
Everyone has certain responsibility in making IT industry grow. That responsibility equates with our responsibility to our environment as we heavily rely to both.