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2004.05.13

情報窃盗罪ができる?

 毎日新聞(MSN-Mainichi Interactive)によると、経済産業省が、個人情報の漏えいを防ぐため、情報窃盗罪の新設を検討し、関係省庁とも協議していく方針を決めたと報道されている。

 現在、窃盗罪の対象は「財物」とされている(刑法235条)。例えば、キセル乗車をして、駅員のいる改札を通らないで、駅の外に出たような場合には、「利益窃盗」となるが、窃盗罪は成立しない。ただ、電気窃盗については、刑法が、電気を財物とみなすという規定を置いて処罰している。少し前に、スーパーのコンセントを無断で借りて、携帯電話を充電した学生が窃盗罪で書類送検された事件があったが、それはそのためである。

 これに対して、同じ財産犯でも、詐欺罪、恐喝罪、横領罪、背任罪については、その対象は「財物」だけでなく、「財産上の利益」も対象とされている。ただ、この「財産上の利益」にも、さすがに情報までは含まれないと解釈されている。

 では、これまでは情報を盗むことは一切犯罪にならなかったのかというと、これまで、裁判所は、いろいろと苦労して、実質的に「情報窃盗」を処罰してきている。

 判例は、新薬に関する秘密資料のファイルをコピーして外に持ち出した行為について、コピー用紙の窃盗として窃盗罪の設立を認めたり(中央薬事審議会資料持ち出しコピー事件)、入試試験問題用紙を持ち出した者に窃盗罪の成立を認めている(早稲田大学商学部入試試験問題持ち出し事件)。
 また、コンピュータ・プログラム作成途上の作業データをフロッピーにコピーして社外に持ち出した行為を、フロッピーディスクの横領として横領罪の成立を認めている(新潟鉄工事件)。

 ただ、判例のケースを見ると、形式的には、コピー用紙や入試問題用紙やフロッピーディスクの窃盗や横領を問題としているが、実質的には、その上に掲載されたり保存されている(これを「化体している」と表現することがある)情報の持ち出しを処罰しているのは明らかである。

 ただ、情報というのは目に見えず、捉えどころのないものである点で、その特定性に問題がある。また、情報については、オリジナルとコピーとで差が全くない。

 このように考えると、情報窃盗については、財物を対象とする財産犯として捉えるよりも、保護された秘密の侵害罪として捉えた方が実態にかなっているかもしれない(荒川雅行「情報と財産犯」阿部純二他編『刑法基本講座』法学書院1993年44頁以下)

 ただ、既に述べたように、情報窃盗については、いかなる行為が犯罪となり、それ以外は犯罪とならないということが法律で明確にされなければ(つまり、犯罪の外延を明確にしなければ)、情報が捉えどころがないことから、情報窃盗の名のもとに、処罰範囲がどんどん拡大していくということにもなりかねない

 例えば、本屋での立ち読み行為でも、広い意味での情報窃盗ではあるから処罰されることが絶対ないとも言い切れない。また、逆に、本屋さんで、自分の携帯電話のカメラで本の一部を写真撮影する行為を、情報窃盗として必ず処罰すべきであるとも言い難い。

 このように、情報窃盗と言っても、それを犯罪として処罰するためには色々な問題が山積しており、一筋縄ではいかなように思われる。今後の経済産業省や法務省の動きが注目される。

【today's back music】
 Ivan Paduart Trio/Blue Landscape (VACD-1006)
 ベルギーのピアニストによるピアノ・トリオですが、何度聴いても飽きません。

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「刑事立法」カテゴリの記事

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仙台市に本社があるブロック紙「河北新報」報道部記者の木村正祥と申します。弊社では個人情報をテーマに今年1月より連載記事を掲載しております。付きましては、情報窃盗罪や福田官房長官の年金未納に関する発言(個人情報に該当するかどうか)などについてのコメントを拝見し、是非、直接取材させていただきたく連絡しました。可能であれば、一度電話でご意見を伺いたいと思います。連絡先の電話番号を教えていただければ幸いです。
 当方の連絡先は℡022-211-1114(河北新報報道部遊軍直通)です。よろしくお願いします。

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