Prohibiting Online Impersonations - California and Canada

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California recently added a new section (Section 528.5) to their Penal Code which makes it a criminal offence to knowingly and without consent credibly impersonate[] another person through or on an Internet Web site or by other electronic means for purposes of harming, intimidating, threatening, or defrauding another person.

California being California, questions were immediately raised: Is It Now Illegal To Pretend You're A Celebrity Online? Christina Santana at the JETLaw Blog provides some background details on the impetus for the law, which apparently is intended to address a rather large lacuna in California's legal code: when the leader of a Silicon Valley industry association had his email accounts hacked and illicit emails sent in his name, he was angered by the fact that California law provided no apparent recourse.

Please see full article below for more information.

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Published In: Communications & Media Updates, Criminal Law Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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