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August 18, 2022
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Legal advice by Pavel, Margarit and Associates: Could opening an account on a social network using other people’s names lead to criminal charges?

In the context of technological development and the appearance of various social networks that are expanding and monopolizing our lives, the criminal phenomena has also increased accordingly to the development and improvement of various methods that are materialized in computer crimes in Romania.

Pavel, Margarit and Associates Romanian Law Firm recommends addressing to a lawyer which is specialized both in the criminal law for the purpose of submitting criminal claims, but also in the civil law in order to provide assistance and representation in disputes in Romania for obtaining reparation for the infringement of personal rights, such as the right to image.

 

Limits of computer forgery in the context of social media- Court decision regarding computer data forgery in Romania

 

The Romanian High Court of Justice has recently ruled, by Decision no. 4/2021 published in the Official Gazette, Part. I no. 171 on February 19, 2021 on the following issue of law:

,, The act of opening and using an account on a social network available for the public providing the name of another person as a username and entering real date targeting this person (information, photos, video images), meets the typical conditions of the computer data forgery, provided by article no 325 of the Criminal Code, with reference to the requirements that the action of entering computer data shall be performed without right and, respectively, to result in data that do not correspond to the truth. “

 Therefore, the court ruled that the action of a person to create a fake profile on the Facebook social account with the name of the injured person and sending photos of the injured person in intimate poses on that account meets conditions of computer data forgery in Romania.

Thereby, the creation of an account on a social network accessible to the public, providing as a username the name of another person and entering real data targeting that person (information, photos, video images) meets the typical conditions of computer data forgery in Romania, provided that it should be done without any right and should result to data that does not correspond to the truth.

A simple creation of a fictional account on a public social network does not have the meaning of a computer data forgery in Romania, assigning a person’s account and posting photos of the person whose identity was fraudulently encroached are activities that lead to the criminal offence.

The criminal legislation ensures the protection against the above-mentioned facts, sanctioning the crime of computer data forgery in Romania with imprisonment from one to 5 years. Also, the civil legislation also protects the image rights, according to the article 73 of the Romanian Civil Code in the conditions in which the use of the name, image or voice in bad faith of a person constituting, according to art. 74 lit. h) of the Romanian Civil Code, an infringement of privacy.

 

 The penalties for the described facts

 

The criminal legislation ensures the protection against the above mentioned facts, sanctioning the crime of computer data forgery with imprisonment from one to 5 years. Also, the civil legislation protects the image rights, according to the article 73 of the Romanian Civil Code in the conditions in which the use of the name, image or voice in bad faith of a person constituting, according to art. 74 lit. h) of the Romanian Civil Code, an infringement of privacy.

In conclusion, by Decision no. 4/2021, the Romanian High Court of Justice draws an essential guideline in relation to the gravity and extent of the criminal phenomena carried out through computer systems. In order to remove the effects of computer forgery in Romania, it is mandatory to contact a specialized lawyer both in criminal and civil law.

 Therefore, it is advisable to use the services of a Romanian law firm to defend a person`s violated rights.

 Pavel, Margarit and Associates Romanian Law Firm has assisted numerous clients in the criminal field, submitting criminal and civil claims, providing assistance and representation in disputes in Romania.

 

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