DOJ: 198 users reported 300 'cloned' Facebook accounts
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DOJ: 198 users reported 300 'cloned' Facebook accounts

( - June 17, 2020 - 11:23am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice received close to 200 reports from social media users on their duplicate and empty Facebook accounts.

DOJ Undersecretary Markk Perete told reporters on Wednesday that they received “198 reports involving over 300 accounts” as of June 15.

“The contents of the accounts have already been preserved upon the request of our law enforcers,” the DOJ spokesperson also said.

Perete last week explained that preservation of data is important so that these may be included should the affected social media users opt to file a complaint later.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra ordered an investigation after several activists and students reported finding their “cloned” Facebook accounts.

The surge of these dummy accounts came amid growing dissent on the Anti-Terrorism Bill both on social media and on the ground—days after a protest was held at the University of the Philippines Diliman.

Perete said that an inter-agency task force consisting of officials from the National Privacy Commission, Department of Information Communications and Technology was created to look in to the issue.

“Investigation is currently ongoing,” he added.

The privacy commission said last weekend that it will meet with officials of Facebook Philippines on Tuesday, June 16.

Perete, however, said the department has no word yet on whether the meeting pushed through.  

The DOJ official previously warned that perpetrators may face charges of violation of the Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, on computer-related identity theft.— Kristine Joy Patag

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