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South Africa’s Cyber Crimes Act ‘not yet active’

Updated: Nov 16, 2021

Even though South Africa’s Cyber Crimes Act19 of 2020 has been signed into law, it remains inactive because its commencement is yet to be proclaimed. This means the legislation cannot be used in prosecuting any of the high-profile cyber attacks the country faced in recent months, says DFIR Labs principal forensic analyst Jason Jordaan.

During a recent meeting with ITWeb, IBM’s Antoinette Eckersley also noted enforcement is the biggest challenge, since the Act has not been promulgated. Commenting on the implications of the Act not legally being in force, Jordaan explains. “Basically, it means that until the Act commences, we cannot investigate or charge people for committing any of the offences defined in the Act, and the longer it takes for the Act to commence, the longer it takes to bring perpetrators to book for any of the offences defined in the Act.”

Noting the need for the Cyber Crimes Act, law firm Michalsons says cyber crime is on the increase, and the Act aims to keep people safe from criminals, terrorists and other states.

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