Back to Index
legalizes spying on Zim citizens
Tichaona Sibanda, SW Radio Africa
October 01, 2013
spy program will now monitor phone calls, text, email and the details
will be kept in a national database for use on demand by the state
Under a new
government regulation gazetted last week Friday, authorities will
order broadband providers, landline and mobile phone companies to
save the information for up to five years. This is under a security
scheme contained in the new constitution that seeks to safeguard
the Statutory Instrument 142 of 2013 details about text messages,
phone calls, emails and every website visited by members of the
public will be kept on record, in a bid to combat crime.
ICT expert Robert
Ndlovu told SW Radio Africa that under the terms of the legislation,
agreed to by parties that drafted the new charter, the content of
such communications would be stored but theoretically inaccessible,
unless there was a warrant issued by a senior police officer or
judicial officer. Ndlovu added that the information will be stored
by individual companies rather than the government.
The same law
now prohibits telecommunications companies from activating SIM cards
that are not fully registered. Providing false information upon
registering a SIM card, such as regarding one’s residential
address, is now an offence.
All mobile phone
users with unregistered SIM cards have been given a 30-day ultimatum
starting next Tuesday to register them, while those registered,
whose addresses have changed, are expected to notify their service
providers within 21 days.
privacy campaigners are up in arms about the plan which many fear
will be abused by Zanu-PF for political purposes. There have been
cases where the CIO has snooped on Robert Mugabe’s political
opponents, such as former Finance Minister Tendai Biti and Morgan
country in the world that I know of has similar laws but the motives
of such regulations are open to debate. In the USA and European
countries, they use the law to fight terrorism.
it could be that they want to use it to fight poaching, where poachers
over 90 elephants using cyanide. But we all know they have been
illegally snooping on their political opponents, so blanket collection,
without suspicion becomes problematic to privacy activists,’
Africa is Zimbabwe's Independent Voice and broadcasts on Short Wave
4880 KHz in the 60m band.
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.