Friday, July 26, 2013

Lack of cyber laws causes difficulties to probe cyber crime

An expert lawyer has said that, lack of cyber crime has been causing difficulties in prosecuting criminal cases involving theft which of recent have been reported to have occurred in some banks’ Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in the country. Adam Mambi who has specialized in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) said in an exclusive interview in Dar es Salaam yesterday in a one day seminar of the National Internet Governance Forum (NIGF) which was organized by the Union of Tanzania Press Clubs (UTPC). Mambi who was among the key speakers said that, Tanzania needs to have Policy and law to define and provide a framework for operation and enforcement of legally-accepted cyber activities in the country.  He said there are so many challenges facing the ICT sector in relation to cyber crime activities citing lack of international contract under which Tanzania cannot enter with another country which can help if applied would lead to the arrest of conmen who practices their mischief and tampers with the ATM machines even when they are outside the country. In order to minimize the increased wave of crimes in this sector, education is of the prime importance, he said adding that, through education Tanzanians might be enlightened for defensive purposes so as to make them become knowledgeable with ICT technological applications.  He insisted on education when asked to verify what methods should there be used in order to control the increased cyber crime and how to arrest the perpetrators tools, in reply he noted that, there should be maintained secrecy among users of the ATMs to facilitate banking services. One method he insisted is through education as each bank customer has the right to be enlightened on the impending dangers while signing a contract with the bank to access their services therein. However, he said and noted that, it has been discovered that, there are some cases which are caused due to negligence and carelessness of the customers themselves an aspect t which makes their pin code numbers comes to be known by friends or relatives who are not trusted and in turn betrays them. The seminar which discussed in general ICT for national development had a focus on the use of ICT tools such as mobile phones, internet and computers  in fostering various sectoral developments at local and international level. Earlier, the Director of Computer Services at te Institute of Finance Management Dr. James Yonazi commented that,  Tanzania needs to have a law on Data protection which would restrict the intervention of the communications through cell phones. However, he noted that, the increased wave of cyber crime in the country would be stopped or otherwise be minimized if users would communicate faithfully and report immediately any suspected cross cutting information to police cyber crime unit. He outlined various challenges facing the ICT sector which includes the children having access to pornography pictures in the network, he warned that if care and education is not given in larger spectrum, there would be a deterioration of a role model. Meanwhile, the Consulting Engineer and Director of ICTs in the Ministry of Communication, Science and Technology, Dr. Zaipuna Yohan, warns that it is high time for the country to acclimatize the technology era and that includes creating legal frameworks to govern its use. Dr. Zaipuna gave his concern in a recent National ICT forum  in Dar es Salaam and noted that, while cyber crimes and other related on-line activities in Tanzania pose a significant threat, existing Tanzanian laws do not recognize many cyber space crimes. Highlighted is theft through Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), un- authorized online posting of personal information and creation of country disorder through online interception and revealing of government secret information and the posting of false accusations against government operations and leadership.  Detailing, Dr Yohan revealed that pursuant to the aforementioned facts, a need exists to have a new set of legislations that will address and advocate the ongoing cyber criminal activities.  The proposed set of legislations will cover Electronic Transactions and E-commerce, Cyber and Computer systems and also provide the Privacy and Data Protection Act. Dr. Yohan said that legislations will help define the laws, create governing bodies for cyber operation on the identified cyber areas and/or add roles to the current controlling bodies to govern the new cyber issues.

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