Korea’s Online Identity System to Be Strengthened

The Korea Communications Committee plans to expand the online real-name system. A new regulation stipulates that when an Internet user posts or spreads a message on a portal site that is false or degrading to other individuals or companies, the portal will be required to step up monitoring and supervision of its contents.A KCC official said Wednesday that the committee is planning to set up a research team including outside personnel to review the effects of the online real-name system. The existing online real-name system was applied to a total of 37 sites: 16 portals with a daily average of over 300,000 visitors, six user-created content sites, and 15 media sites with a daily average of 200,000 visitors.The expansion of the system, which can be done by simply revising the Information and Communications Act, is likely to include smaller portals. Under the real-name system, Internet users are required to have their names and identification numbers checked when writing replies to news articles posted on newspaper and portal sites. By tightening the regulations, the KCC hopes to strengthen the responsibility of the portal sites.Under the current regulations, an individual or an organization who sustains damage due to information circulating on a portal can ask the site to remove the information. However, portals are not obliged to do so since there are no punitive measures for refusal. The act is likely to be changed in a way that would strengthen punitive measures against portals, making them monitor online contents.

(englishnews@chosun.com )


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