VPN in the UAE: What you can, cannot access through the network

Dubai - Misuse can attract heavy penalties as well jail terms.

By Waheed Abbas

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Published: Mon 22 Mar 2021, 10:55 AM

Last updated: Mon 22 Mar 2021, 12:30 PM

The usage of Virtual Private Network (VPN) applications is the highest in the UAE globally as six out of 10 people use them.

Though it’s legal to use VPNs, its misuse can attract heavy penalties as well jail terms.

Article 1 of the Amended UAE Cyber Law states that using a "fraudulent computer network protocol address by using a false address or a third-party address by any other means for the purpose of committing a crime or preventing its discovery" is punishable with imprisonment and/or a fine of Dh500,000 to Dh2 million.

"The usage of VPN in the UAE is not illegal if it is used as per the guidelines of the UAE government and TRA," said Ashish Mehta, managing partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates.

Below is the list of stuff that you can or can’t access using VPN.

What you can’t access:

>>Content that is blocked by authorities

>>Content that violates UAE’s laws

>>Content that violates UAE’s culture, social norms

>>Anti-religious websites

>>Sites promoting hatred

>>Using VPN to watch vulgar content

>>Using VPN to access blocked gambling websites

>>Using VPN for fraudulent purposes

What you can access:

>>Content that is open and accessible

>>Content that doesn’t violate UAE’s moral laws

>>Content that doesn’t spread hatred


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