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AB-1104 The California Political Cyberfraud Abatement Act.(2017-2018)



Current Version: 04/19/17 - Amended Assembly        


AB1104:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 19, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1104


Introduced by Assembly Member Chau

February 17, 2017


An act to amend Section 18320 of, and to add Section 18320.5 to, the Elections Code, relating to elections.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1104, as amended, Chau. The California Political Cyberfraud Abatement Act.
Existing law makes it unlawful for a person, with intent to mislead, deceive, or defraud, to commit an act of political cyberfraud, as defined. Existing law defines the term “political cyberfraud” to include a knowing and willful act concerning a political Web site that is committed with the intent to deny a person access to a political Web site, deny a person the opportunity to register a domain name for a political Web site, or to cause a person reasonably to believe that a political Web site has been posted by a person other than the person who posted the Web site, and would cause a reasonable person, after reading the Web site, to believe the site actually represents the view of the proponent or opponent of a ballot measure. Existing law also defines the term “political Web site” to mean an Internet Web site that urges or appears to urge the support or opposition of a ballot measure.
This bill would modify the definition of the terms “political cyberfraud” and “political Web site” to include Internet Web sites that urge or appear to urge the support or opposition of candidates for public office. The bill would also make it unlawful for a person to knowingly and willingly make, publish or circulate on a Web site, or cause to be made, published, or circulated in any writing posted on a Web site, a false or deceptive statement designed to influence the vote on any issue submitted to voters at an election or on any candidate for election to public office.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 18320 of the Elections Code is amended to read:

18320.
 (a) This act shall be known and may be cited as the “California Political Cyberfraud Abatement Act.”
(b) It is unlawful for a person, with intent to mislead, deceive, or defraud, to commit an act of political cyberfraud.
(c) As used in this section:
(1) “Political cyberfraud” means a knowing and willful act concerning a political Web site that is committed with the intent to deny a person access to a political Web site, deny a person the opportunity to register a domain name for a political Web site, or cause a person reasonably to believe that a political Web site has been posted by a person other than the person who posted the Internet Web site, and would cause a reasonable person, after reading the Internet Web site, to believe the site actually represents the views of the proponent or opponent of a ballot measure or of a candidate for public office. Political cyberfraud includes, but is not limited to, any of the following acts:
(A) Intentionally diverting or redirecting access to a political Web site to another person’s Internet Web site by the use of a similar domain name, meta-tags, or other electronic measures.
(B) Intentionally preventing or denying exit from a political Web site by the use of frames, hyperlinks, mousetrapping, popup screens, or other electronic measures.
(C) Registering a domain name that is similar to another domain name for a political Web site.
(D) Intentionally preventing the use of a domain name for a political Web site by registering and holding the domain name or by reselling it to another with the intent of preventing its use, or both.
(2) “Domain name” means any alphanumeric designation that is registered with or assigned by any domain name registrar, domain name registry, or other domain registration authority as part of an electronic address on the Internet.
(3) “Political Web site” means an Internet Web site that urges or appears to urge the support or opposition of a ballot measure or a candidate for public office.

SEC. 2.Section 18320.5 is added to the Elections Code, to read:
18320.5.

It is unlawful for a person to knowingly and willingly make, publish or circulate on an Internet Web site, or cause to be made, published, or circulated in any writing posted on an Internet Web site, a false or deceptive statement designed to influence the vote on either of the following:

(a)Any issue submitted to voters at an election.

(b)Any candidate for election to public office.