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Communications Minister Says There's Strong Support For Cyberbullying To Be Criminalised

The minister cited a survey conducted by MMU with 409 respondents.

Cover image via Malay Mail & New Straits Times

A local survey has found that 89% of legal practitioners want cyberbullying to be categorised as a criminal offence, according to Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah

The survey, which was conducted by Multimedia University (MMU), involved 409 respondents.

According to a report in Bernama, Saifuddin stated that 74% of legal practitioners stated that a special court needs to be created for cyberbullying.

He also said that 71.6% of legal practitioners and 89.3% of the public wanted specific laws or acts to be introduced for cyberbullying.

MMU was appointed by the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia (KKMM) to conduct research related to online bullying since 3 July

"These findings are very important because we want to know what the community and legal practitioners feel about cyberbullying. It is a serious matter," Saifuddin told Bernama after a meeting on 8 December.

KKMM has not implemented any new laws on cyberbullying as they are still looking into the issue

Saifuddin said that KKMM will be looking into existing provisions and legislation under the Penal Code before cyberbullying can be made a crime.

MMU was asked to give KKMM a detailed report of their findings.

"The survey figures are raw data. We hope the full and complete report can be completed," Saifuddin said.

"When it is done, we will look at whether to introduce a policy or opt for amendments to the law."

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via AsiaOne

Asking for help is not a sign of weakness.

If you or anyone you know may be at risk of suicide, please call these Malaysian hotlines:

1. BEFRIENDERS KL
24-hour
Contact: +603-76272929
Skype: BefKL Skype 1
Email: [email protected]
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2. TALIAN KASIH
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Contact: 15999
WhatsApp: +6019-2615999
Email: [email protected]km.gov.my
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For a more thorough directory of resources, head over to the Malaysian Mental Health Association's website.

Earlier this year, a global survey found that Malaysia is among the world's top countries where parents have reported their children experiencing cyberbullies:

While cyberbullying is not completely criminalised in Malaysia, body-shaming is still a punishable offence:

Learn more about how to deal with mental health issues here:

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