BATU SAPI, Jan 12 — Electronic surveillance in the country is legal, but subject to adequate protection to prevent abuse, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Liew Vui Keong.
He said Malaysian laws on electronic surveillance are in line with international standards and law enforcement agencies do not embark on electronic surveillance at will.
“We have codified parameters for electronic surveillance in law and incorporated sufficient safeguards to prevent abuse.
“Agencies must first approach the Public Prosecutor and present their case. Should the Public Prosecutor be convinced that the surveillance is absolutely necessary to obtain information of a criminal offence, only he can require the surveillance be carried out,” he said in a statement tonight.
On human rights concerns involving the right to privacy, he said: “An absolutely important right without doubt. But no human right is absolute. Exceptions exist to strike a difficult but important balance between conflicting interests of the individual and the State at times. One such exception in this case being electronic surveillance necessary to safeguard national security and combat the increasingly complex nature of crimes today.” — Bernama