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NPC stops 'lisensya' site 

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The National Privacy Commission (NPC) extended the cease-and-desist order (CDO) on lisensya.info — a website that provided personal information on registered users of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to the public, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

In a statement, NPC said the extension of the CDO was the result of the failure of the website owners and operators to counter allegations of privacy violations that the NPC received late in 2020.

“The CDO was first served on Nov. 12 against respondents Jose Minao and Billy James Jimena, the website’s owners and operators, who were given until Nov. 22, 2020, to file a comment on the allegations and to present their defense,” the NPC said.

To prevent further privacy breaches through the website, it said the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has also issued a memorandum dated November 16, 2020, that directed internet service providers (ISP) to block access to the website.

In a letter sent to the NPC dated Dec. 21, the NTC said several ISPs have blocked access to the lisensya.info website, including PLDT, Smart Communications, Dito Telecommunity, InfiniVAN, Pipol Broadband and Telecommunications Corp., Philippine Telegraph & Telephone Corp., Apo Associated Radio Electronics & Communications Co., and Kabayan Cable TV Systems.

Moreover, both Google and Firefox have flagged lisensya.info on Nov. 24, noting that Google Safe Browsing detected “phishing activities,” or fraudulent attempts to gain sensitive information, on the website.

“Users, who choose to proceed to access the website despite the security warning, will be directed to a YouTube video. The same happens when users use browsers without a security warning. Some users, upon accessing the website, are directed to a statement saying “lisensya.info’s server IP address could not be found,” the NPC said.

In November, the LTO released an advisory to registered motorists that the lisensya.info website is not tied with the LTO and should not be given sensitive information.

Those who used the website claimed that the data provided by the website were accurate, raising suspicions of a leak in LTO’s database.

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