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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Remulla to Congress: Fast-track IRR of SIM card registration law

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JUSTICE Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla called on lawmakers to hasten the release of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the SIM Card Registration Act which is expected to give the government’s all-out campaign against online sexual exploitation of children (OSEC) a boost.

Remulla made the call after United Nations special rapporteur on the sale and sexual exploitation of children Mama Fatima Singhateh paid him a courtesy visit on Thursday.

He said the SIM Card Registration Act is an important tool against OSEC.

“We’re asking Congress, the Senate and the House to speed up the IRR for the SIM Card Registration Act for it to be executory and help us identify all the perpetrators because we know that they are using prepaid and data services in online sexual case and in trafficking children,” Remulla said.

During his meeting with Singhateh, Remulla said he handed her an official letter outlining the government’s efforts to combat the problem of child sexual exploitation.

“We also told her about our problems with our existing laws, including our Anti-Money Laundering mechanisms which are very restrictive,” he said.

Remulla also asked the UN rapporteur to push for the sharing of databases related to OSEC among member countries of the UN.

The Department of Justice and other concerned agencies earlier launched an all-out war against OSEC after data showed that the country has become the top source of such illegal content.

Remulla acknowledged that one of the major challenges in addressing the problem is technological, which is vital in tracing the perpetrators.

Remulla earlier said he would be issuing an ultimatum to all telecom companies and internet service providers (ISPs) to perform its obligations under the law that requires them to install software that will block access to or transmittal of any form of child pornography in the internet.

Under Republic Act 9775 or the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, telco companies and ISPs are mandated to install a program or software that will block access to or transmittal of any form of child pornography in the internet.

It also requires ISPs to notify authorities within seven days from discovery that any form of child pornography is being committed using their servers or facilities.

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