2006 News Story

Shura Council approves law to fight electronic crimes

The Shura (Consultative) Council approved Saudi Arabia’s first law to combat electronic crimes in an ordinary meeting yesterday chaired by Saleh bin Homaid.

The new law outlines the penalties and fines for hacking into other people’s personal information or hacking websites and damaging their contents, the Arab News reported today. The 16-part regulation also specifies that individuals who use the Internet to obtain information illegally from public or private sources will be severely punished by fines, jail terms or both.

The maximum punishment will be meted out to unauthorized individuals who access government websites and steal information related to national security, the Arab News reported. Those who build websites that support terrorism, provide instructions for making bombs, or advocate teachings that support terrorism and its agendas will also receive heavy punishment.

Yesterday, the Shura Council also allowed the Minister of Interior to authorize officials to grant Saudi citizenship to foreign women married to Saudis or expatriate widows of Saudis.

The new regulations will be effective within 120 days of publication in the official gazette.