Dubai: Police have arrested a man for recording an unusual incident that took place at an intersection on Jumeirah Road.
The man was also detained for posting and sharing the video on social networking sites, which went viral in the UAE within a couple of hours after it was uploaded online.
The footage recorded a dispute between a valet worker of a hotel and a woman who refused to pay for the parking fees.
The viral video, which circulated through social media on Tuesday, showed the valet parking worker sitting on the car’s bonnet as the female motorist drove away. Eventually, the driver forced the valet worker to jump off the car.
Colonel Faisal Al Qasim, Director of Security Media at Dubai Police, said that recording people without their knowledge and publishing their images on social media or on websites is a criminal offence in the UAE.
According to Article 21 of the UAE Cybercrime Law, any person who misuses technology to breach the privacy of others can be sentenced to jail for six months and/ or a fine ranging from Dh150,000 - Dh500,000.
Under Article 21 of the Federal Decree, Law No. (5) of 2012 for cybercrime, a person will be held liable for breach of privacy if they eavesdrop, copy or email any type of information and scenes, or disclose and publish any data online regardless whether it is true or not.
People should never send videos to relatives or friends, even if it is in good faith, so as not to be held legally accountable.
Col. Al Qasim called on members of the public to report any incident, crime or dispute to the authority by calling the non-emergency number 901 or through the Police Eye service, which can be found on the Dubai Police app or the website dubaipolice.gov.ae.
With the Police Eye feature, residents can file their complaints from across nine different categories: disturbances, alcohol or drugs, suspicious vehicle, suspicious sale, gambling, vandalism, prostitution, begging and miscellaneous.
Residents were also warned not to take photographs or videos of others, as Col. Al Qasim explained that “people should never send videos to relatives or friends, even if it is in good faith, so as not to be held legally accountable.”
“Trading videos or picture can harm ohers and damage their reputation,” said Col. Al Qasim, adding that such types of irresponsible behaviour contradicts the customs and traditions of Emirati society.
The UAE Cybercrime Law No. 5 of 2012 was issued by President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and includes fines ranging from Dh50,000 to Dh3 million; depending on the severity of the offence.
The law states that:
- Those caught gaining access to a website, network or system without authorisation can face imprisonment and a fined of no less than Dh 50,000. If personal information is stolen or deleted, the fine can reach up to Dh1 million.
- Persons caught misusing technology to invade someone else's privacy, including eavesdropping, copying photos or publishing information, can be jailed for six months and face a fine between Dh150,000 and Dh500,000.
- A person can be punished with five years in jail and a Dh3 million fine if they are found to have run malicious software that caused a network or IT system to stop functioning, or if their actions led to “crashing, deletion, omission, destruction and alteration of the programme, system, website, data or information”.
- The law stipulates various penalties for a number of other cybercrimes, including insulting religions and their rituals, slandering public officials, forging electronic official documents, sending or republishing pornographic materials, reproducing credit or debit card data, and obtaining secret pin codes or passwords.