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cyber-crimeThe government of Tanzania is reviewing laws to cope with the growth of cyber crime and other computer-related offences including e-fraud and violation of privacy.

This was said by The Director of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) at the Ministry of Communications, Science and Technology, Dr Zaipuna Yonah in Dar es Salaam yesterday . The technical process of the laws would be ready by the end of the year.

“We are on the consultation process with various experts and we hope by the end of the year we will be through and forward the matter to relevant processes and eventually we will have laws in place,” he said.

Dr Yonah was speaking during the opening of the East Africa Banking and IT Security Summit 2013, held under the theme “combating the emerging threats in banking and payment transactions in East Africa.”

Cyber crime is a critical challenge in the country and in the region, in particular adding that the government is taking measures to protect its people from the same. “There are so many crimes being reported, but we do not have a strong cyber crime law to help the victims get legal redress,” he said.

He said there are so many challenges that have been brought by ICT as advancement of technology gives no time for offended individuals to complain as things are happening through automated devices.

“So many people are now using mobile phones almost half of the country’s population and so many transactions are being made online and yet our legal control is much limited,” he said.

He added that with the country’s national ICT backbone well spread, so many challenges related to cyber were inevitable and the legal systems need to be strengthened. He called on business operators and investors to ensure that their companies are being run responsibly.

In another development, Dr Yonah said the government was also planning to have ICT experts certified to ensure maximum security. He added that plans were underway and the move comes following the rapid increase of individuals purporting to be ICT experts without academic qualifications.

“We want to ensure secure businesses, investments and make sure that our people stay safe in this technological world,” he said. The Cyber Security Africa Operations and Communication Manager, Mr Luke Mulunda said Tanzania has pioneered the ICT backbone in the East African region and is now about to set the pace by introducing a cyber crime law.

“In Kenya we have ICT law but it is not focused on cyber security, I am glad that Tanzania is leading the way and other countries will follow,” he said. The Cyber Security Africa Alliance Manager, Sammy Kioko said his company organised the meeting to bring together ICT stakeholders to learn on the risks of applying ICT and the best ways to address the challenges.

“We are helping participants to put in place systems that works and we have technologies that can help prevent some of the crimes especially those involving stealing monies from ATM machines,” he said.

Credit: Daily News