South Africa's Cyber Crimes Bill was passed by the National Assembly last week, and is inching closer to becoming law.
As the National Assembly process is completed, the Bill will soon be transferred to the National Council of Provinces for agreement, following which it will eventually reach the president to be signed into law.
Angela Mace, CRM and Events director at ITWeb, says now more than ever, South African businesses need to be aware of what the Bill entails, as well as what organisations can and can't do in the ‘cyber world'.
"There has been some controversy around the Bill. People have questioned whether or not we need the Cybercrimes Bill, and critics have voiced concerns that the Bill is too broad and open to potential abuse. Some have even said that it threatens the inherently democratic spirit of the Web."However, she says it is clear that cyber crime is on the rise, the threat landscape is becoming increasingly complex, and attackers are more sophisticated and determined than ever before. "The Bill's aim is to keep South Africans safe from criminals, terrorists as well as other nation states."
Ultimately, she says businesses need to understand how security events can be avoided, and whether the tools, processes and solutions they have are effective in fighting today's threats. "Moreover, they need to know how to prepare for an incident, and what is needed to put good incident response mechanisms and procedures in place. The Bill covers all of these issues."
The Bill also contains strict rules around hacking or gaining unauthorised access to a third-party's data, she explains. "It also covers the collection and storage of information to be used as evidence, as well as how it needs to be handled during the legal process."
ITWeb Security Summit 2019 will provide delegates with the latest updates on the Cyber Crimes Bill. "The Bill affects us all: organisations across the private and public sector, as well as individuals. There are severe consequences for non-compliance with the law, so it is crucial to gain a thorough understanding of the potential impact on your business," she concludes.
The ITWeb Security Summit 2019 will be held in Johannesburg at the Sandton Convention Centre, from 27 to 31 May 2019, and in Cape Town on 23 and 24 May, at the Southern Sun.