PLANNING TO FILE A CASE? HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Revenge porn is illegal under R. A. No. 9995 (The Anti-photo and Video Voyeurism Act of 2009) and R. A. 9262 ( The Anti-violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004). However, because R. A. No. 9995 focuses on voyeurism, it may fall short when it comes to stolen bikini photos. It punishes stealing and posting photos of a person’s “private areas” in situations where one could reasonably believe they wouldn’t be visible to others, whether they’re in a public or private place. Is it reasonable to claim a woman in a bikini didn’t think her breasts would be visible, given she was at the beach? Does her bikini count as “undergarments?” “[R. A. 9995] protects women who post pictures of themselves without any clear intention of making their photos ‘revealing’ so to speak, but apparently not those whose intention appears otherwise,” Atty. delos Santos explains. You can file a complaint with the NBI Cybercrime Division or the PNP Anti-cybercrime Group. However, since under the law everyone is assumed innocent until proven guilty, the burden of proof is on the complainant. This means that the victim has to provide the police with a suspect. If the person who posted your photo used a fake account, it’s up to you to establish his identity. Until then, the police’s hands are tied because of the Data Privacy Act of 2012, which prohibits them from tracing a suspect’s IP address without a court order. That said, you can definitely ask the PNP or NBI for advice regarding the evidence you’ll need to file the case, and how to lawfully obtain that evidence.
Unfortunately, while stealing and posting someone else’s photos is clearly offensive, whether that act is punishable under the law depends on the type of photo that was stolen.