Wednesday, September 27, 2023

UAE Fine Up to Dh1 Million for Breaking Social Media Laws, Here’s Rules You Must Know

When using social media platforms in the UAE, individuals must comply with the regulations and guidelines set by local authorities, as well as the provisions outlined in the UAE Cybercrime Law, Federal Law No. 5 of 2012. These guidelines aim to ensure responsible and respectful use of social media while safeguarding the values and interests of the country.

Here are some important points to consider regarding social media usage in the UAE:

  1. Respect for Religion: It is crucial to avoid making derogatory or offensive posts that malign Islam or any other recognized religions. Such acts are considered a violation of Article 37 of the UAE Cybercrime Law and may result in imprisonment for up to seven years and penalties ranging from AED 250,000 to AED 1 million.
  2. Protection of Women and Children: Sharing content that poses harm to women or children is strictly prohibited. This includes engaging in activities related to human trafficking, pornography, prostitution, and actions that go against public morals. Violating these provisions, as stated in Article 32 to Article 34 of the UAE Cybercrime Law, may lead to imprisonment ranging from one to five years and penalties from AED 250,000 to AED 1 million.
  3. Government Criticism: Posting content that criticizes the government, government departments, ruling regime, symbols, or political system of the UAE or any other country is considered a serious offense. Provisions from Article 20 to Article 28 of the UAE Cybercrime Law address such offenses, and legal consequences can be severe.
  4. Insulting Public Sector Employees: Insulting or defaming public sector employees in the UAE through social media is also considered an offense. It is important to exercise restraint and maintain respectful communication.
  5. Personal Privacy: Respecting the privacy of individuals is crucial. Posting photographs, videos, or comments without permission that invade someone’s privacy is an offense under Article 44 of the UAE Cybercrime Law. Such violations may result in imprisonment of at least six months and penalties ranging from AED 150,000 to AED 500,000.
  6. Accuracy of Information: It is important to avoid disseminating inaccurate information from authoritative sources and engaging in gossip or defamation. Sharing misleading or false information can lead to legal consequences.
  7. Influencer Licensing: If individuals aspire to become social media influencers and endorse paid advertisements, it is advisable to obtain a license from the National Media Council or the appropriate regulatory body in the UAE. This ensures compliance with relevant regulations and maintains transparency in commercial activities.

By adhering to these guidelines, individuals can navigate social media responsibly and contribute to a safe and respectful digital environment in the UAE.

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