[Pakistan] AIC Issues Media Statement on Removal and Blocking of Unlawful Content (Procedure, Oversight and Safeguards) Rules, 19 Nov 2020

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[Pakistan] AIC Issues Media Statement on Removal and Blocking of Unlawful Content (Procedure, Oversight and Safeguards) Rules

19 November 2020

AIC members are alarmed by the scope of Pakistan’s new law targeting internet companies, as well as the government’s opaque process by which these rules were developed. The consultation that was announced in February never occurred. 

The draconian data localization requirements will damage the ability of people to access a free and open internet and shut Pakistan’s digital economy off from the rest of the world. It’s chilling to see the PTA’s powers expanded, allowing them to force social media companies to violate established human rights norms on privacy and freedom of expression.

The Rules would make it extremely difficult for AIC Members to make their services available to Pakistani users and businesses. If Pakistan wants to be an attractive destination for technology investment and realise its goal of digital transformation, we urge the Government to work with industry on practical, clear rules that protect the benefits of the internet and keep people safe from harm.

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