The Institute, through the African Centre for Cyberlaw and Cybercrime
Prevention (ACCP), is collaborating with the Department of Information Science of
the University of Pretoria to formulate and promote a project, Lex Informatica, to
enhance the study of and disseminate knowledge about forensic science and
cybersecurity. This project promotes efforts to enhance the regulation ,use,
generation and storage of information at the personal and institutional levels, and
explores how relevant information can drive development. Information
communications technology experts are part of a programme to publicize the value
of ethical conduct in the context of social networking in the information age. The
project also aims to safeguard the cybercommunity from the effects of electronic
crime proliferated mainly through cyberscams, identity theft and other junk e-mail
fraud. A number of sensitization and training workshops have been organized in
South Africa, Ghana and Uganda, targeting university students who will
subsequently be agents within their respective communities. The theme for 2013
was the advancement of cyberlaw and information ethics in Africa and globally.
Experts in forensic and digital science and information technology, practising
lawyers, business and corporate executives and public and private sector
departments are following up on the project. A presentation was made by ACCP on
global high-technology developments in the world and their implications for Africa
at the workshop held in Pretoria.
The Institute through collaboration with the Council of Europe organized a training
workshop on the development and enhancement of legislation against cybercrime in
East Africa. In light of the impact of cybercrime, States in East Africa (Kenya and
Uganda) have adopted cybercrime legislation, while others (Burundi, Rwanda and
the United Republic of Tanzania) are preparing such legislation, often with support
from international or regional organizations. The workshop provided important
information in an effort to contribute to consistent and effective cybercrime
legislation in East Africa.
The workshop involved:
(a) Analysis of current and draft legislation of participating countries in
terms of consistency with the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime, rule of
law principles and effectiveness;
(b) Elements of cybercrime enforcement strategies identified by participants.
The available information concerning the response to cybercrime indicates the
following concerns, as identified by ACCP:
(a) The ad hoc support normally provided is not always suitable for the
long-term process of legislative reform;
(b) Legislative gaps and inconsistency with international standards;
(c) Bias towards legislation on electronic commerce rather than criminal
(d) Insufficient safeguards and conditions regarding procedural powers;
(e) Lack of enforcement capabilities and strategies.
In this regard, ACCP/UNAFRI is seeking to create effective coalitions with relevant
institutions and experts in Africa to proactively facilitate remedial action, including
preparing effective legislation against cybercrime. Good practices developed based
on successful initiatives in controlling cybercrime in other continents has inspired
the planning of a series of workshops in Africa. Africa is expected to benefit from
support from the Council of Europe as part of a new global project to promote the
implementation of the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime.