Draft bill governing instant messaging apps unveiled

The Department of Consumer Protection has unveiled a new draft bill related to instant messaging apps.

Consumer protection official Chen Hsin-hong said on Monday that instant messaging app operators must notify consumers and close accounts for them if their usernames are stolen.

In the event that operators shut down an account either because it was hacked or because the company was updating servers, then they would be responsible for helping consumers reactivate the account. They would also need to reactivate services including money that's been paid into the account, and value-added products connected to the service.

The bill would also require apps to show a warning message in the event that a consumer takes the initiative to shut down an account.

Chen said operators could also face punishment if they release consumers' personal data or collect excessive information.

In the event that personal information is leaked, operators will be liable for damages under the Personal Information Protection Act if they are responsible for the leak," said Chen.

Under the draft bill, operators would have the right to prevent consumers from accessing their account if they use the app to engage in scams, money-laundering, drug sales, or sharing inappropriate photos with minors.

Source: Radio Taiwan International