Federal Investigation Authority is not investigating CCTV footage leaked from a cinema in Lahore. Director Cyber-Crime wing Afzal Mehmood told Digital Rights Monitor that FIA’s cyber-crime has a complaint based mechanism and only takes actions when an aggrieved party makes a complaint.
He was speaking to DRM after Senate’s standing committee meeting on IT & Communication and said, “We have not received any complaint regarding this incident. We will definitely take action against it if once a formal complaint is lodged by someone”.
Videos of movie-going couples were leaked from a Lahore based cinema last week, which went were shared widely on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Digital and women rights activists immediately flagged the videos and reported them to the social media platforms. They were quick to take action and remove the videos once the complaints started coming in. The videos though continued to be shared through Whatsapp.
This incident generated a debate in mainstream and social media about privacy laws in Pakistan. Social media and rights activists are also running a campaign with hashtag #privacysabke on twitter to lodge a protest against this incident.
It is pertinent to mention that it’s not the first incident of this kind in Pakistan. In January a similar incident surfaced when pictures of citizens in their cars circulated on social media allegedly recorded from cameras installed as part of the safe city projects.
Correction: We have updated the title of Afzal Mehmood, the Director FIA Cyber Crimes Wing (NR3C), which was noted as DG FIA mistakenly in the story.
Amel Ghani is a Program Manager at Media Matters for Democracy and leads special initiatives on media development, digital rights, privacy online and Media and Information Literacy (MIL).