What legal recourse do you have if your personal info is published online?

Legal experts say Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has no defence after publishing a screengrab of a Whatsapp message from veteran journalist Karima Brown which revealed her personal cell number.

The incident has led to Brown being threatened with death and rape by EFF supporters.

READ: Sanef condemns Malema's actions towards journalist Karima Brown

Social media lawyer Emma Sadlier explains the legal recourse you would have if a person publishes your personal information which puts your safety at risk.

There is no question that you have an expectation of privacy over your cellphone number, it is very personal information.

Emma Sadlier, Social media lawyer and associate - Webber Wentzel

...we deal with the common law of privacy. Does Julius Malema have a defense in publishing it? No. Karima should have consented, obviously she didn't. The second is public interest or public benefit and there is no public benefit in this.

Emma Sadlier, Social media lawyer and associate - Webber Wentzel

He could easily have told the same story without posting her cellphone number.

Emma Sadlier, Social media lawyer and associate - Webber Wentzel

Sadlier references a case where businesswoman Uyanda Mbuli laid a charge of crimen injuria against a woman who posted Mbuli's cellphone number on Facebook while, addressing her as a 'b**ch'.

Sadlier says the same charge can be applied in Brown's instance.

Crimen injuria can be used in this case, a protection order can be obtained from the Magistrate's court, not just from Julius Malema himself but from all of these EFF supporters who have been sending her these threats.

Emma Sadlier, Social media lawyer and associate - Webber Wentzel

Click on the link below to hear more from Sadlier...


This article first appeared on 702 : What legal recourse do you have if your personal info is published online?


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