Don’t use social media to ‘weaponise information’: Jailani Johari

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysians were today urged to not use social media to “weaponise information” as it would backfire on the users.

Stating this, Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Jailani Johari (pix)urged social media users to be responsible and have “self-control” when posting or sharing information on the Internet.

“Responsible usage of the social media is what we have been advising all along.

“When we don’t think about the consequences, there is always the danger of the information becoming a weapon,” he told theSun.

Noting that statistics have shown a steady increase in social media users from 2015 to-date, Jailani said every individual is responsible for their own safety on the Internet.

“For example, cyber bullying can result in suicide. There is no point (for people) to say that they did not mean for their words to have that effect,” he explained.

In the Dewan Rakyat earlier, Jailani said every user should have “self-control” when using social media, although there are laws to protect users and prevent irresponsible parties from misusing the Internet.

“I want to advise Internet users, don’t make the social media as (a platform for) weaponising information,” he said.

Jailani was responding to questions by Datuk Raime Unggi (BN-Tenom) who had asked the ministry on the total number of social media users in Malaysia and the actions for personal data protection in the social media.

Malaysia to-date has over 24.5 million Internet users, of which 83.9% are active on social media.

Jailani said the expanded penetration of broadband has encouraged wider usage of social media among Malaysian Internet users.

“I want to stress that laws can help monitor social media, but there has to be a certain degree of self control among users. This is what I want to stress, we as users should not share personal information on social media.

“For example, we can change our passwords at least once every three months or use alphanumeric characters to protect our social media account passwords.

“We also should not access any online links that we are not comfortable with as it can have implications. This is what I mean about weaponising information,” Jailani said.