Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Computer Crime Act 1997

For Malaysia to be a world leading country in ICT
development and be a global centre and hub for
communication and multimedia information and content
services (8), a law needs to be formed to promote a high level
of consumer confidence and to protect the information
security and network reliability and integrity. Therefore, the
first important step that is taken by the government of
Malaysia to combat this new type of crime is by introducing a
new legal framework to facilitate the development of ICT
systems by countering the threats and abuses related to such
systems called Cyber Laws of Malaysia. The Malaysian
cyber laws consist of Computer Crime Act 1997, Digital
Signature Act 1997, Telemedicine Act 1997, Communication
and Multimedia Act 1998 Copyright (Amendment) Act 1997,
Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission Act
1998 and Optical Disk Act 2000.
There are other existing laws that will be used in
conjunctions with these acts. They are the Official Secret Act Act 1976, Patent Act 1983, Prison Act 1995, Akta Arkib
Negara 44/146 and other relevant legislations. This set of
Acts has made Malaysia as one of the first countries to enact a
comprehensive set of cyber laws. The above Acts were
formed for the purpose of safeguarding consumer and service
providers besides on-line businesses and owners of
intellectual property.
Computer Crime Act 1997 (CCA 97)
The CCA 97 was given its Royal Assent on June 18, 1997
but was only enforced on June 1, 2000 (9). CCA 97 main
concerns are offences due to the misuse of computers and
complement the existing criminal legislation. CCA 97 is
in fact has a lot of similarity with the UK Computer Misuse
Act 1990 in terms of the offences but differs in several ways.
It is different in that CCA 97 gave an interpretation of
computers, computer networks, output, data, functions,
programs and premises. The interpretation of a computer
in CCA 97 is summarised as any electronic machines that are
programmable and has the facility for data storage.
The CCA 97 also covers a wider range of offences
compared to CMA 1990 which only covers 3 aspects of
computer misuse: unauthorised access, unauthorised access
with intent to commit or facilitate other crime and
unauthorised modification. The three other offences
included in CCA 97 are wrongful communication, abetment
and attempts punishable as offences and presumptions.
Besides that, it also covers on obstruction of search. The
CCA 97 also gives more severe punishment compared to
CMA 1990 (UK). Table 1 lists the offences as well as the
punishments covered in CCA 97.
Table 1. List of Offences and Punishment in
Computer Crime Act 1997
Type of Offences Punishments
Sec. 3 Unauthorised
access to computer
Imprisonment: Not > 5 years
Fine: Not > MYR50,000 or both
Sec. 4 Unauthorised
access with intent to
commit or facilitate
commission of
further offences
Imprisonment: Not > 10 years
Fine: Not > MYR150,000 or both
Sec. 5 Unauthorised
modification of the
contents of any
Imprisonment: Not > 7 years, If
injury caused: >10 years
Fine: Not > MYR100,000; If
injury caused : Not >
MYR150,000 or both
Sec. 6 Wrongful
Imprisonment: Not > 3 years
Fine: Not > MYR25 000 or both
Sec.7 Abetment and Imprisonment: Not > ½ of
attempts punishable
as offences
maximum term
Fine: Same amount as offences
In conclusion, computer crimes are still on the rise. It is
easy to commit a crime whether we realize it or not. There are
a lot of tools available on the Internet that can be used to
commit all sorts of crimes such as fraud, identity theft, scams,
denial of service attacks, hacking and breaking in and so forth.
A lot of actions and approaches have been taken by the
governments as well as private sectors around the world to try
to combat the computer crimes. In the case of Malaysia, the
government has set up legal frameworks that are used to
punish the offenders such as the Cyber Laws of Malaysia.
apart from the technical approaches taken by each individual
organizations. Though there is no fool proof approach that
can be taken to stop computer crimes from occurring, but by
having these approaches mentioned above applied efficiently
and effectively, users awareness and involvements it is hope
that it will put the problems under control.

Proceedings of the International Conference on
Electrical Engineering and Informatics
Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia June 17-19, 2007


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    Once again, thank you :)

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