Addressing the Challenges posed by Cybercrime: a South African Perspective
AbstractThe South African common law has proven to be ineffective in addressing cybercrime. The Electronic Communications and Transactions Act, Act 25 of 2002 (“ECT”) was introduced to address inter alia cybercrime in South Africa. Whilst the advent of the ECT is lauded, there is room for improvement. To illustrate this, section 15 of the ECT which facilitates the admission of information in electronic format is laudable, but the criminal sanctions in the Act appear to be inadequate. Recent case law also reveals that the courts are adopting a cautious approach towards cybercrime cases. A call for a more clear and concise judicial guidance is required. The South African banking sector is also vulnerable to cybercrime. However, the establishment of organisations such as SABRIC to combat cybercrime in the banking industry is welcomed. Although South Africa has adopted the Council of Europe’s Convention in Cybercrime, it has not ratified the treaty. It is recommended that South Africa should ratify the treaty to avoid becoming an easy target for international cybercrime. This paper will deal with measures addressing cybercrime in South Africa and the way forward.