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Impersonating on social media would be crime under bill

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Impersonating someone on social media would be made a crime under a bill up for a vote in the Wisconsin Assembly.

The measure scheduled for approval on Tuesday targets what’s known as “catfishing” which happens when someone impersonates another person online with the intent of defrauding or harassing him or her.

The bill has bipartisan support and would make the crime a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and 90 days in jail.

The bill co-sponsor Rep. Bob Kulp says he introduced the measure after a friend of his was targeted by someone trying to defraud him out of money.

Kulp says the bill would revise current law, which only deals with email fraud. He says it’s similar to laws in place in other states, including California, Texas and Pennsylvania.

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