SEOUL, Sept. 27 (Korea Bizwire) – Sexual voyeurism has grown in prevalence in recent years as words like “Revenge Porn” and “Mol Ca” (Secret filming of another person’s body) have entered the everyday lexicon, serving as unsettling reminders of the dark side of an increasingly connected world.
South Korean society recently reeled from a series of highly publicized incidents this past summer, when an acting judge and a teacher at a girls’ high school were both apprehended for secretly filming female bodies.
Rapidly advancing technology has exacerbated such social ills, as hard to detect micro cameras have become increasingly available. These devices can be disguised as various personal effects or household items by perpetrators.
In May, a filming device disguised as a clock was discovered in the changing room for female employees at a Nonghyup grocery store, providing real evidence that such technologies are actually in use.
The problem for law enforcement is that the legal grounds required to regulate manufacturers and distributors of these devices have been lacking until recently.
Police launched an inspection on various industry actors earlier this month. Without the necessary legal backing, however, the most they could do was check whether companies were properly licensed in accordance with wireless telegraphy laws.
In response, the government plans to introduce a licensing system for manufacturers and retailers of filming devices like the one used in the Nonghyup case. It has also proposed a system that would track the distribution of the devices through a compiled database.
To stem the spread of secretly filmed content on the web, the government intends to revise standing laws in a move to empower investigatory agencies. This would enable the agencies to request the Korea Communications Standards Commission (KCSC) to take down and delete specific files. In specific cases, the KCSC will be able to put a hold on a file upon a victim’s request and decide how to proceed.
Distributors of revenge porn from which a person’s identity can be deduced will face more punitive measures than before. Whereas such perpetrators were previously served with fines, convictions for these offenses will now result in jail time.
Taking into account that the majority of victims are women, an Internet sex crime department will be established. The department will be headed by female officials.