Internet: Regulation

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 30th January 2018.

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Photo of Joan Ryan Joan Ryan Labour, Enfield North

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, the publication of the Law Commission‘s Thirteenth Programme of Law Reform, what further steps his Department plans to take to review legislation on offensive online communications; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Lucy Frazer Lucy Frazer The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

Legislation that can be used to prosecute offensive online communications includes the Protection from Harassment Act 1997; the Malicious Communications Act 1988; and the Communications Act 2003. The Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015 made changes to the relevant offences in these last two Acts which aims to ensure that people who commit them are prosecuted and properly punished. Not all communications which cause offence are illegal.

My Department ha no current plan to introduce specific additional legislation to address offensive online communications.

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