Internet real-name system boosts cyber security in S Korea 2008-04-24 09:50:16   Print

    SEOUL, April 23 (Xinhua) -- Since the adoption by the South Korean government in 2005 of the Internet real-name system, people's privacy, reputation and economic rights are better protected, according to the Ministry of Information and Telecommunication.

    South Korea, where about 76 percent its population are netizens, has developed a comprehensive Internet real-name system, regulating users of emails, online forums, blogs, online videos and many other Internet products.


    The South Korean government had been promoting use of real names on the Internet since 2002, and formally launched a real-name system in October of 2005, following several cases of privacy violation and defamation on the Internet by anonymous users in the year.

    The Internet real-name system has evolved constantly in South Korea. At the very beginning, it was only implemented among users of emails and online chatting services. But later, it was expanded to cover online postings, blogs and clips of online videos.

    For those who want to apply for an email or online chatting service account in South Korea, they have to fill a form first, providing detailed information including their name, address, identity number, and profession.

    Website service providers will only grant their request after confirming the authenticity of the information they have provided.

    Meanwhile, the South Korean government has continuously revised and enacted laws on Internet security. From July 2007, websites must, as regulated by laws, register and check such data of online message posters as identity card number, otherwise a fine of maximum 30,000 U.S. dollars will be imposed.

    In order to protect the privacy of posters, netizens who have passed the online identity check are allowed to use code instead of real name to leave a message.

    Besides posting messages with real name, major Internet portals also demand that each person leave no more than 100 pieces of messages every day.

    If a poster causes disputes, Internet portals are obliged to shield the message for 30 days to protect the rights of netizens.

    The portals will be punished instead of defendants who could not be found out, if legal disputes occur due to failure of real name register.

    Surveys made by the Ministry of Information and Telecommunication revealed that, with the adoption of the real-name system, uncivilized postings in some major Internet forums such as abuses and personal attacks decreased by more than 50 percent.


    As a country with one of the most developed IT industries in the world, South Korean's Internet culture has entered a new phase which is characterized by an increasing number of blogs.

    The South Korean government has also adopted real-name system for Internet blogs to prevent violations of human rights and to secure a healthy development of the blog world.

    According to relevant regulations, netizens must be registered with their real name and identity card number when they set up a blog or post messages in other people's blogs.


    On March 18, 2007, a porn video appeared on the "" and stayed there for more than 6 hours before it was noticed by the website staff and deleted. This incident aroused serious concerns in the South Korean society.

    Since then, the South Korean government has promulgated a series of laws forbidding spreading porn contents through Internet and punishing hackers.

    According to South Korean law, if failed to block contents of pornography, defamation and other illegal contents, the websites should take legal responsibilities.

    The South Korean government and the main websites of the country have adopted policies to block porn videos.

    According to the policies, the South Korean Information and Telecommunication Ministry has set up a 24-hour informant center to detect illegal information on the websites. The police department has established a "website police department" to tackle reports on website illegal activities.

    The South Korean Information and Telecommunication Ministry is using technical methods to block porn video from abroad.

    The website real-name system has established the social consciousness that website users should also abide by ethic and legal codes. It has also provided the foundation for the protection of netizens and the prevention and investigation of website criminal activities.

    Meanwhile, the South Korean government has also adopted a tolerant attitude for legal website users and requires the Internet service providers to provide strict protection for individual information, which facilitated the public's acceptance of the real-name system.

    This system has also helped to promote the development of online banking and consumption and attracted large sums of investment into the web industry, making the continuous upgrading of the industry and online service possible.

Editor: Sun Yunlong
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