UMNO MP Datuk Raime Unggi has claimed that using Google Maps and Waze threatens national security as they give foreign countries information about Malaysia. The remark was made during Question Time in Parliament, and was thankfully rebuked by Communications and Multimedia Deputy Minister Datuk Jailani Johari.
Raime had said in his question that in his question that “Malaysians are very dependent on Google Map(s) and Waze for location searching and this has indirectly provided information about Malaysia to external quarters such as the United States and Israel and it could lead to external threats”.
He was supported by Kuala Selangor MP Datuk Irmohizam Ibrahim, posed the question, “how far do we have laws that prevent information leaks in the usage of Google and Waze? Are there laws to make sure national security protected in the usage of such apps?”
Jailani, however, explained that the country cannot afford to abandon ICT services for the risk of being left behind. He also explained that the information collected by Google Maps and Waze is user generated, and that the users can always opt out the data collection. Jailani also brought up the issue of Malaysians being too free with their personal information while online.
“The real issue is that our users are fond of over-sharing private information on the internet. This results in the information being misused. As a smart internet user, we should have our own controls,” said Jailani.
While Raime’s views are rather shocking come from an MP, they are not exactly new. We here at Lowyat.NET have encountered the very same thing on our site a couple of years ago when Google Street View was first introduced in Malaysia. Those curious can behold this gem of a comment from way back then.