Abu Dhabi: The UAE has taken an extremely strict stance against hacking and related electronic crimes, with a minimum fine of Dh100,000 on offenders and even jail sentences in some instances, the UAE Public Prosecution has warned.
Taking to social media, the Public Prosecution said fines can be as high as half a million dirhams for serious offences. The penalties are detailed in Article 2 of the Federal Decree-Law No 34 of 2021 for Combating Electronic Crime and Rumours.
“Whoever [illegally hacks] a website or electronic information system or network, or a means of information technology, shall be sentenced to imprisonment and/or fined a monetary penalty of not less than Dh100,000 and not more than Dh300,000,” the Public Prosecution said.
The penalties shall be increased for more serious offences, with steeper fines and longer jail sentences.
“The penalty shall be imprisonment for a duration of not less than six months and a monetary penalty of not less than Dh150,000 and not more than Dh500,000 if the hacking leads to damage, or destruction, suspension, or obstruction of a website, an electronic information system, an information network or a means of information technology, or the cancellation, deletion, destruction, divulgence, alteration, copying, publication, republishing or acquisition of any data or information, or loss of confidentiality,” the law states.
“The punishment shall be imprisonment for a duration of not less than a year and/or a monetary penalty of not less than Dh200,000 and not more than Dh500,000 if the penetration [or hacking] was committed for [obtaining] data or information for the accomplishment of an illegitimate purpose,” the statement from Public Prosecution said.