Friday, March 17, 2006

ID theft in South Korea

The Korean government will strengthen its measures to prevent crimes related to the stealing of personal
information, amid increasing concerns over privacy theft on the Internet. The Ministry of Government Administration and Home Affairs has proclaimed a new law, under which one could serve up to three years in prison or face a maximum 10 million won fine for unauthorized use of personal information.

Read more here.

1 comment:

Floris said...

The new Korean laws, which focus on the criminalisation and punishment of identity theft, are a tough response to the recent and increasing occurrences of internet crime. For example, the personal information of more that 230,000 South Koreans was stolen and used to create Ids at a game site.

The new laws are an attempt at bringing offenders that use the internet to steal personal information to justice. It will act as a deterrent when coupled with crime prevention information that points out the significant consequences to potential offenders of unlawful behaviour on the internet.

In general, a multi-faceted approach, focussing on prevention, is required in order to combat crimes relating to the stealing of personal information. This may include:

-Educating and informing internet users about the crimes’ dangers and the steps that can be taken to avoid becoming a victim.

-Action should be taken towards limiting the opportunities for it to take place by making the crime more difficult to commit. The future lies in technology tools such as biometric technology to identify people.

-Monitoring of IP addresses suspected of being used in the theft of private information (increased monitoring was part of Korea’s new measures).

There must also be planning, coordination, and cooperation within and between government agencies. Due to the global nature of internet crimes there must be increased inter-jurisdictional and international cooperation.

There are also other issues that must be addressed, including the allocation of loss. Who should bear the costs of identity fraud? Should banks or other financial institutions be liable if their customers incur damages caused by identity theft?

In Australia, there is a need for national laws that directly address all of these complex issues instead of the relying upon the few sections contained within the Criminal Codes. This would involve a consideration of whether the laws should be technology neutral to address the rapid technological changes.