Mai Titi nudǝ pictures and videos, 5-year jail term: Potraz issues statement

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Zimbabwe’s Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (POTRAZ) has expressed concern over the rising number of cases involving the sharing of intimɑte images and videos without consent. The regulatory body has said that individuals engaging in such activities could face prosecution under the Data Protection Act, potentially leading to a five-year jail term.

The recent incident involving Felistas Murata, popularly known as Mai TT, a social media influencer, has brought the issue to the forefront. Nudǝ pictures and videos of Murata were leaked on various social media platforms, allegedly by her ex-husband.

Potraz’s Director-General, Dr Gift Machengete, released a statement addressing the issue, highlighting the violation of the Data Protection Act through the circulation of such content.

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“Potraz as the designated Data Protection Authority of Zimbabwe has noted with concern the increasing number of incidents of collection, sharing, distribution and or broadcasting of intimɑte images and or videos without the consent of the person whose intimɑte images and or videos would have been shared,” said Dr Machengete.

“The purpose of this notice is to advice members of the public that: 1. Intimɑte images and videos form part of personal information which is categorised as sensitive data under the Cyber and Data Protection Act [Chapter 12:07]. The Act prohibits the collection, sharing and distribution of sensitive data without the consent of the data subject. 2. The Cyber and Data Protection Act (Chapter 12:07] as read with Section 164E of Criminal Law Codification & Reform Act [Chapter 9:07] prohibits the collection, transfer, sharing and or broadcasting of intimate images and or videos without the consent of the person concerned.”

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He said the law seeks to curb the humiliation and embarrassment of persons whose intimɑte images and or videos would have been shared.

“It also empowers citizens to have control over the processing of their personal information. This is in line with the fundamental rights to human dignity and the right to privacy as enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe in Sections 51 & 57 respectively,” he said.

Dr Machengete said those found sending nudǝs will be liable for prosecution.

“Those who continue to collect, share, distribute and or broadcast intimɑte images and or videos without the consent of the data subject of the images and or videos shall be liable for imprisonment for a period up to five (5) years or a fine up to level ten and or both such fine and such imprisonment,” said Dr Machengete.

“Members of the public are strongly advised against the collection, sharing or distribution and or broadcasting sensitive personal information, including any intimɑte images and or videos of any person without the consent of the data subject.”

He said the authority will take appropriate members to protect the public from those who abuse social media.

— Chronicle

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