The Law Respect Culture Bureau at the General Directorate of the Community Protection and Crime Prevention, the General Secretariat of the Office of H.H Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, organized an awareness lecture for people with special needs. Under the title “Legal Warning for Social Media Users”, the lecture was held in Zayed Higher Organization for Humanitarian Care and Special Needs’ Headquarters in Abu Dhabi.

Milan Sharif, Legal Researcher from Law Respect Culture Bureau, explained the laws and regulations that regulate Internet use. She said that ignorance of the law does not excuse anyone, even people with special needs, and that the law is applied equally and without discrimination to all people, except those with mental disability.

Additionally, she noted that the UAE law sets out significantly high penalties on all aspects of cybercrimes. “The Cyber Crimes Law makes it an offence to use social media to breach someone else’s privacy, including taking pictures of others, or publishing or displaying those pictures; or to publish private conversations or personal news without their knowledge; or taking other people’s money by stealing their credit card information via online scams, and abusing children and people with special needs- physically or psychologically- by immoral people,” she said.

Ms. Sharif also explained that legal consequences of cybercrimes are a direct result of ignorance of the cybercrimes law. This may lead to harsh legal accountability, initially intended to deter offenders from committing such crimes and to protect the privacy, interests, safety and security of individuals.

In conclusion, Ms. Milan Sharif said that the UAE Ministry of Interior works diligently to fight cybercrimes by adopting cutting-edge technologies. She listed the different forms of cybercrimes, notably identity theft, stealing credit card information, fraud and cyber extortion, where offenders target their victims with SMS or social media platforms. She also highlighted the various penalties and financial fines set forth by the UAE law for such crimes.

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