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Trophy hunter’s claim he was ‘doxed’ by regional publisher rejected

NewIPSOA trophy hunter claimed he was the victim of a “doxing” operation by regional news titles – despite them publishing information about him that was already publicly available.

Syed Rizwan made the claim about Reach plc titles Essex Live, Wales Online and Berkshire Live after they reported on an interview he had given to another publication about his hunting practices.

The stories featured information about Mr Rizwan that had appeared on his Facebook page, as well as detials about where he lived and the company he owns.

In a complaint to the Independent Press Standards Organisation, Mr Rizwan claimed this represented a campaign of doxing – the action of maliciously uncovering and publishing private information about someone online. However, his complaint was dismissed by IPSO after an investigation.

Complaining under Clause 1 (Accuracy), Clause 2 (Privacy) and Clause 6 (Children) of the Editors’ Code of Practice, Mr Rizwan said the titles’ coverage revealed the location of his family home because it identified the town where he lived and his company which, he said, was registered at his home address.

Among other issues, he also expressed concern that information had been obtained and published from his private Facebook account.

Denying any breach of Code, Reach denied its coverage included sufficient information to identity the Mr Rizwan’s home or reveal its exact location.

It also provided screenshots of his Facebook, which showed that the published information had been available publicly at the time of publication.

IPSO found Mr Rizwan’s full address appeared on his company’s website and was therefore in the public domain, while the information found on his Facebook page had also been publicly available at the time of publication.

The complaint was not upheld, and the full adjudications can be found here.