Thursday, January 10, 2013

Arizona law to criminalize impersonation Facebook and Twitter accounts

"Creating a Twitter or Facebook account to maliciously impersonate someone could trigger criminal charges if a pending Arizona bill becomes law.

That worries defenders of the 1st Amendment, who say unscrupulous prosecutors might use the measure to intimidate anyone engaged in political parody and satire.

Supporters of House Bill 2004 say it’s aimed at identity theft. Anyone who poses as someone else online without authorization and with the “intent to harm, defraud, intimidate or threaten” could be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. The top penalty: 2 1/2 years behind bars."

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