PTA starts registering social media companies
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has started the registration of social media companies under ‘Removal and Blocking of Unlawful Online Content (Procedure, Oversight and Safeguards) Rules, 2020.’
The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication has formulated the rules under Section 37 of Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016.
According to the ministry’s notification in exercise of powers conferred by sub-section (2) of sections 37 of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016, (XL of 2016), the federal government approved the rules prescribed by the PTA.
These rules provide for safeguard process and mechanism for exercise of powers by the Authority under the Act for removal or blocking access to unlawful online content through any information system.
A social media company having half a million users requires separate registration for each application/service.
Further, a social media company shall immediately notify focal person details in case of any change, the Authority stated.
The platforms with more than half a million Pakistani users will have to get registered with the PTA and establish a registered office in the country within nine months of the rules’ implementation.
Within three months of the office establishment, a focal person will have to be appointed for coordination, and a data server system has to be set up within 18 months.
According to the registration forms, the social media company will be required to give company name, type of service/application, website, number of users in Pakistan (at the time of registration), number of users in Pakistan, address in Pakistan (local office details to be provided as per timelines stipulated in the Rules), company authorisation letter (to be attached with this form), and authorised focal person details.
As per the rules, in case a service provider, social media company, owner of information system, owner of internet website or web server and user fails to abide by the provision of these Rules, the Authority may issue directions for blocking of the entire online system, or any services provided by such service providers owned or managed by the said service providers or the social media company.
Newspaper: Business Recorder