“The Inauguration of Legal Assistance Cell for Cyber Crime”
On March 8, 2019, the Legal Research Institute of Pakistan (LRIP), in collaboration with the Build Pakistan Movement (BPM), inaugurated the “LEGAL ASSISTANCE CELL FOR CYBER CRIME” in Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Honorable Law Minister for the Government of KP was invited as the Chief Guest of the event. The conference was attended by members of academia, the intelligentsia, the media, civil society, and students.
LRIP, Chairman Mr. Ameer Muazzam Butt addressed the conference, emphasizing the significance of cyber criminology, which affects both men and women. He condemned the massive increase in human trafficking, particularly of women. He described the difficulty of young girls being unable to trust their own parents in a situation that jeopardizes their honour. He was outraged by the number of cases in which women who reached out to law enforcement agencies became victims of the agencies. According to him, most women do not want to expose their names while complaining because they are afraid of being embarrassed and taken advantage of. He assured the women in the audience that LRIP will provide them with a platform where they will not have to reveal their identities and will receivethe legal assistance, they require to deal with the cybercrime situation they are in.He assured the audience that the institute would handle the cases with the utmost respect and sensitivity for both men and women. He explained the idea behind his institute, which is to help the general public form opinions about all policies and have their voices heard by those in charge of policy formulation.
He told the audience that the institute will work through various petitions and will knock on the doors of courts and parliament to be heard. He explained to the audience how his institute works for people from all walks of life equally, and how it assisted students in gaining their first experience in provincial courts. He urged the audience to consider themselves a part of this institute because he desires everyone involved in this to work together to improve the laws and make Pakistan a better and just state. He concluded by presenting his ideas and invited Miss Maheen to the stage to formally announce categories of support that the institute will provide to those in need. She briefly reiterated the services that the Legal Research Institute will provide, as previously stated by the honorable Chairman.
Barrister Sultan Mohammad Khan, the Chief Guest during his address congratulated the host of the event. He provided a brief history of Women’s Day, beginning in the twentieth century in Russia. He praised the institute for putting on such an important event, which serves as a forum for discussion and information for women and other victims of cybercrime. He discussed the meetings he has had with the Prime Minister, stating that the main focus of those meetings has always been human rights, specifically women’s rights. He explained that these rights have become provincial governments’ top priorities, and they have taken significant steps to achieve these safety goals. He asserted that it was his honour for him to inform the audience that one of the accomplishments was the appointment of a women’s spokesperson on a governmental level to ensure that these authorities are more accessible to women. He came to the conclusion that when it comes to women who have been victims, it becomes very personal to him. He cares deeply for the young women who are similar to his daughters, and it hurts him to see them in danger.He explains that women are the most important part of society, and he hopes that the institute and other organizations will band together to help these people who are being victimized due to a lack of knowledge. He concluded by expressing hope that Pakistan will develop when women in the country will consider them safe and sound from their fellowmen.
The next speaker was Shahid Illyas, an FIA cybercrime investigator. He deliberated the legal department of cybercrime and why it is necessary to have it. He thoroughly briefed the audience on how cybercrime differs from traditional crime and how much more dangerous it is. He advises parents to be fully prepared for any and all consequences if they entrust their children with a cell phone. He urged the audience that parents should have faith in their children to provide them with safety if something bad happens to them because only in this way will the children reach out to their parents and not go to extreme measures to deal with the crisis on their own. Through his slides, he explained the National Response Center for Cybercrime and its responsibilities. Following that, he explained how scammers take advantage of people’s naivety to convince them to send money. He discussed a couple of cases he has worked on and how hacking works for these criminals. His main concern was indeed female harassment, and he described how women are harassed on the internet. He addressed the women in the audience, providing them with ideas and tips on how to stay safe based on his own experiences. He expressed his thoughts about social media and the extent to which it is used for cybercrime. He spoke directly to the women about how simple it has become to file complaints about such matters, and how there is no longer any need to walk yourself to the FIA to comply. They can file a complaint via email or the app. He assured the female audience that they should never be afraid of discomfort or other misconceptions about embarrassments, and that if they come to the authority, the authority will assist them in any way possible. He concluded by taking questions from the audience and assisting them in understanding how they can protect themselves from apps that use their personal information as well as other people who take advantage of them.
Mr. Dawar, who represented FATA in the programme, began his address by thanking Chairman Muazzam Butt for his efforts. He stated that his institute is far superior to all others in the state. He condemned the government’s actions in keeping internet and broadband connections out of FATA because, in his opinion, these tribal areas are in the dark because they are kept away from such facilities that can help the people with their security issues. He informed the audience that if there is satellite internet in FATA, it is being misused by uploading videos of women and family functions to the internet, which fuels tribal conflicts between families and has been going on for decades.He hoped that the LRIP would assist FATA in this regard. His second concern was about the lack of policies for FATA’s women running home businesses. He requested from the hosts that efforts be made to implement such policies so that women can earn a living with ease.
The conference was concluded on a positive note with anticipation from the speakers and the audience that the institute will play its due role in assisting the individuals who have been the victim of cybercrime.