Laws reviewed to help police fight cyberbullying, doxxing

Top News | Angel Kwan 18 Oct 2019

Laws are being reviewed to handle cyberbullying and doxxing of police officers, Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said as pan-democratic lawmakers protested in the Legislative Council chamber for a second day.

Lam was forced to deliver her policy address in a pre-recorded video broadcast the previous day after the Legco meeting was suspended when she was heckled by the pan-democrats.

Yesterday's question-and-answer was also disrupted - with Lam answering just three questions, all from pro-government lawmakers.

Pan-democrats holding white funeral flowers tried to have a minute's silence for those who died during the four months of protests in Hong Kong.

Legco president Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen rejected the request but was forced to stop the session after 20 minutes when 11 pro-democracy lawmakers - including Ted Hui Chi-fung, Wu Chi-wai and Jeremy Tam Man-ho - were ejected one after the other after chanting slogans that Lam was not fit to rule.

Gary Chan Hak-kan of the pro-Beijing Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong asked about cyberbullying of police and their families.

Lam said: "With the experience this time, we are willing to review the law so that the law in the future can give us more abilities to handle this sort of cyberbullying and doxxing."

The government is now actively reviewing and studying possible amendments to the Personal Data Privacy Ordinance jointly with the privacy commissioner for personal data to strengthen protection.

The commissioner has already put forward preliminary recommendations on amendments to the ordinance to the government, according to a paper from the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau tabled to legislators yesterday.

These include raising fines, exploring the feasibility of introducing direct administrative fines and regulating data processors directly.

Lam was also asked by Chan how the government would handle the unrest as it was not mentioned in her third policy address.

"To bring peacefulness back to Hong Kong, the first thing is to unite society and say no to violence together," Lam said.

"As in the policy address I delivered yesterday, the government will make our best effort to stop this violence and support the enforcement of the police force."

Pro-establishment lawmaker Edward Lau Kwok-fan said Hong Kong is in anarchy.

"If someone suggests anything that can be done by the chief executive to get Hong Kong out of a difficult situation, but it would violate the rule of law and one country, two systems, I'm afraid I cannot do so," Lam said.

In the second session of the meeting, the DAB's Leung Che-cheung said the violence started with the pan-democrats, as they allowed the rioters into the Legco Complex on July 1.

The pan-democrats said it was a serious accusation and urged Leung to take back what he said. But Leung refused. The meeting was paused again and resumed after about 15 minutes. It ended at noon.

"It is the worst Q&A session ever," Gary Chan said. "Seventeen legislators have pushed the button [to queue to speak], but only three had the chance to ask."

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