Electronic Transactions Act to be reviewed next year

BY: Timothy Ngnenbe
 Mr Albert Antwi-Boasiako being assisted by Ms Abena Kesewa Brown to launch the book. Picture: Maxwell Ocloo
Mr Albert Antwi-Boasiako being assisted by Ms Abena Kesewa Brown to launch the book. Picture: Maxwell Ocloo

The Ministry of Communications will from the beginning of 2019, commence processes to review the Electronic Transactions Act, 2008 (Act 772) to make it more robust for prosecuting cyber-related crimes.

That, according to the National Cyber Security Advisor, Mr Albert Antwi-Boasiako, would ensure that the loose ends of the legislation were tightened to better position the country to deal with the increasing cases of cybercrime, particularly in the financial sector.

"Ghana has got the Electronic Transactions Act (Act 772) as a legislation that helps to facilitate cybercrime investigation and prosecution.

 The Act is still relevant and responsive as far as the current typologies of cybercrime in the country is concerned.

However, this law was passed in 2008 and that is about 10 years now and this means that there are certain gaps that ought to be addressed,” he explained.

Launch

Mr Antwi-Boasiako made this known at the launch of a compliance and cyber magazine by the Institute of Compliance and Cyber Studies (ICCS) in Accra last Monday.

The quarterly magazine provides information and sensitisation on cyber issues and the need for the country to build a robust cyber security regime, especially in the wake of increasing cyber-related crimes in the banking sector.

Legislation

Mr Antwi-Boasiako said while the position held by some people that the country did not have provisions in the statutes that criminalised cybercrime was not true, some cyber offenders were let off the hook because some law enforcement agencies lacked the capacity to prosecute such cases.

"What we need to do is to equip our law enforcers with forensic capabilities, we need to build the capacity of our judges, which the Ministry of Communications and other partners have started working on; and we need to also equip the Attorney-General's Department too in terms of the prosecutors that take the cases to court so that they can get digital evidence to build strong cases," he said.

Cyber Security Authority

In a speech during the cyber security month celebration in October this year, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo announced that the government would set up a National Cyber Security Authority, to have oversight responsibility of the    cyberspace in the country.

 Mr Antwi-Boasiako made reference to that and said it was a timely move that would help to secure the cyberspace and tackle the challenges posed by miscreants in the cyber ecosystem head-on.

Investment

The Director of the National Banking Collage, Ms Abena Kesewa Brown, for her part, urged financial institutions and other organisations to invest more in cyber security infrastructure and build the capacity of their technical staff to minimise the risk of cyber attacks.

She also called for regulatory compliance across all sectors as the way forward to checking cybercrimes and ensuring safety and value for money.

The Executive Director of ICCS, Mr Theophilus Kwadjo Odjer-Bio, called for a national dialogue to increase cyber insurance in the country.

He said preliminary findings of a research being conducted by ICCS showed that there was only one insurance entity that provided cyber insurance for members of the public and institutions.

Useful links Ghana Politics | Ghana Celebrity News | News in Ghana