If I haven’t mentioned it before, SoMeLaw Thoughts is one of my new favorite reads. Its down-to-earth perspective on legal issues tied to social media and other communication tools is refreshing.
In one of the blog’s more recent posts, “Congratulations! You Are Now a Spammer in Malaysia,” I found the content particularly interesting from a web archiving perspective.
The writer of the post reports that Malaysia has decided to “amend their Evidence Act of 1950.” In brief, if your name appears on, or is associated with any type of media (photograph, video, etc…) you are considered the author. Additionally, any type of communications sent through a service provider account with your name on it, or from a computer owned by you or under your control, you are also liable for that content. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
Malaysia’s amendment to their Evidence Act is intended to reduce the activites of spammers and other nefarious activities online. The challenge that the SoMeLaw writer sees from the changes Malaysia made is in the case of provability. All the spammers and others need to do is hack accounts (which they already do) and attribute illegal content to officials and other people or businesses on their “hit” lists.
How can they possibly prove publishing fraud? From a Hanzo standpoint, the accused could produce (as evidence) a foresically sound web archive of their entire web and social media activity on the specified date. There’s your proof.
With regulatory compliance laws regarding published web and social media content quickly merging with international governance policies, taking proactive measures to secure the provability of your content warrants consideration. It may be time to amend your eDiscovery and information management policies.