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Friday, 21 November 2014

THREE CYBER LAWS TO BE TABLED IN THE NEXT PARLIAMENTARY SESSION

Hon. J.Y Makamba
In order to combat cybercrimes, Cyber laws cannot be ignored. This goes together with well trained Judges that will be able to understand them and act on them accordingly. Most of the countries have been working on cyber laws – Initiates new ones and reviews the ones existed in order to update for them to go along with the current situations.

Among the issue discussed during the “CYBERCON AFRICA 2014” was the need of legal framework to facilitate the fight against cybercrimes. We all agreed there is a lot to be done. Countries in Africa are still struggling when it comes to legal framework which makes the fight against cybercrime to be harder than expected.

Three cyber laws bills in Tanzania that will provide legal framework for the criminalization of cyber and network related offences will be tabled in the next parliamentary session, the government announced.

Deputy Minister for communication, science and technology – Honorable, January Makamba made the announcement in the parliament naming the bills as the cyber security law, Personal data protection law and the computer and cybercrime law.

According to the deputy minister, the bills have both been presented before the cabinet and secretariat for recommendations. He made the announcement when responding to a question from Nkenge MP assumpter Mshana (CCM).

The MP wanted to know when the government will curb cybercrimes and how many suspects have been booked in connection with cybercrimes. Makamba detailed that available statistics indicate that for the period of January 2012 to September 2014 a total of 999 cybercrimes were reported at the police centers around the country.


“A total of 212 cybercrimes cases where a total of 132 suspects were involved have been taken to court and 787 cybercrimes cases are in different level of investigations”, He explained. Makamba said theft through use of mobile phones is not difference from other offence, “The Ministry have been receiving a lots of complains on mobile money theft and from SIM banking”, He admitted.

He went on to not that in most cases, criminals get account holder’s details from the account holder or through other means, enabling the criminals to conduct transaction including stealing or transferring money from the account holder.

Makamba used the opportunity to warn the public to refrain from revealing their bank or mobile money account details to strangers. He warned the public that cybercriminals use text questions or phishing mails and conditions that a client is asked to sign revealing their account information.

“This is very dangerous and in most cases, without their knowing, account holders release their details to criminals. You must read carefully before releasing your details to people you don’t know,” He warned.

He said the government has purchased a central equipment identification registrar which will make it easier to identify criminals and security organs have been trained on ways to investigate such cases and stressed the importance of providing public education (Awareness programs) on the issues.


He said Banks and telecommunication companies should provide education on the importance of keeping their personal details secret.