Body shaming is a crime, warns IGP

Inspector-General of Police Abdul Hamid Bador has advised the people to avoid body shaming anyone, especially on social media.

PETALING JAYA: Inspector-General of Police Abdul Hamid Bador said today any act of body shaming by insulting and disparaging someone’s body is a crime that can be punished under the law.

Speaking to Sinar Harian, Hamid said authorities can act under Section 233(1)(a)(b) of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998, Section 509 of the Penal Code and Section 14 of the Minor Offences Act 1955.

If found guilty under the CMA, offenders could face a fine of not more than RM50,000 or a maximum jail term of one year or both.

“Meanwhile, offences under Section 509 of the Penal Code can be punished with up to five years in jail.

“For offences under the Minor Offences Act, a person who is charged can be fined not more than RM100,” he said.

Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) chairman Fadhlullah Suhaimi also told the Malay daily that the commission would work with the police from technical aspects should a report be filed.

He said victims of body shaming online should first lodge a police report before referring the matter to MCMC.

“MCMC will assist in investigations in technical-related matters for further action,” he said.

Once the matter is verified by the cops, MCMC will then inform Google and YouTube on the police report before blocking any accounts, he said.

This comes after a woman lodged a police report against a prominent figure on social media for insulting her body on Facebook.