The lack of an Electronic and Cybercrime Bill has made it rather challenging for Programmers and other Online Marketers to offer our clients with a full range of online solutions as a lot of “manual” methods of conducting is still required.
For instance, at this point in time online- or e-signatures are not yet seen as a valid form of identification, thus the full online application process of products and services (especially in the banking and insurance industry) cannot be offered as customers are still required to physically sign the forms before it can be legally processed. This is but one of many examples of online limitations created due to a lack of a law that governs the use of the internet within a country.
Now while this still holds true, the Namibian Government has recently announced in a local newspaper that the Namibian Electronic and Cybercrime Bill was ready for tabling in Parliament on 18 February 2017; however was withdrawn for further public consultation.
Many may not notice it; this law is extremely valuable to the growth of Namibia. Once this law is passed more online services and solutions can be offered to corporates, individuals and the public sector. Consumers will be protected when conducting online transactions (shopping) within Namibia which means more e-Commerce portals will be made available. Service Providers will also be protected and offences will be created ensuring that our innocent is protected online.
At the same time it is important that the public, IT Professionals, Online Security Professionals, Programmers, business, corporates and anyone else in the industry review the points outlined within the bill and provide their inputs before the Bill is tabled again. It is important that factors like “the right to be forgotten” be considered for the protection of user data within Namibia. Factors like “white hat hacking” should be considered as it means that the local community can assist when an online bug or vulnerability is found.
According to the Government Notice placed in a National Newspaper, the Electronic and Cybercrime Bill’s main objectives are:
While the Electronic and Cybercrime Bill was ready for tabling in Parliament on 18 February 2017 it was withdrawn for further public consultation. It is requested that all public feedback and comments be provided on the Bill on or before 16 June 2017.
Copies of the Bill can be obtained from the following sources:
For more information about the Bill in question, kindly contact Ms. Elizabeth Ujarura Kamutuezu via the following channels:
Email Address: Elizabeth.Kamutuezu@mict.gov.na
Telephone: +264 61 283 2393
Cellphone: +264 81 143 8414
It is with that, that we at iWits would like to urge all to review the Electronic and Cybercrime Bill and provide the government with your insights and feedback. This is now our chance as professionals in the various fields to stand together and make a change in our countries Internet Laws.