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Combating Cyber Crime in African Region

Combating Cyber Crime in African Region

Except a few, many countries in Africa do not have Cyber Law yet and with the rapid penetration and usage of Internet in these countries the number of cyber incidents are becoming more and more often. Law Enforcement Authorities (Police & Gendarmerie) are facing the challenge of how to attend to cyber crimes when victims are complaining of hacking , phishing , identity theft etc.. Two things that are of direct concern are (i) the capacity of Law Enforcement to attend to such crimes, and (ii) until they get a piece of cyber law to act upon, they have to manage to get the culprits within the existing criminal laws prevailing in the country which is not easy. Both situations needs time, efforts and most importantly decisions at very high level.

Noticeably, some countries in West Africa are making efforts to combat cyber crimes.

In Benin 12 officers from Gendaremerie Nationale & Police Nationale had a full week training on combating Cyber Crime (Formation appliquée sur la cybercriminalité 3- 6 Dec 2012) organized by Francopol with the collaboration of the “Organisation Internationale De La Francophonie”. The training was held at the Police Training School in Cotonou.

Likewise in Burkina Faso, 16 officers from Gendaremerie Nationale & Police Nationale had a similar training from 25th February to 1st March 2013 through the same sponsorship, both being French speaking countries.

However, not much is being heard on cyber law or international cooperation to combat cyber crime from these countries. Exposure to the existing cyber law, convention on cyber crime and 24/7 High Tech Crime Network are no doubt things that will help them to catch-up.

Other than South Africa, Zambia and Mauritius that do have capacity and laws to combat cyber crimes, countries like Ghana, Botswana and a few others are also improving in this area.

I want to hear more of developments in this region, anybody is most welcome !!!

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