President Kenyatta signs into law the Computer Misuse and Cyber crimes Bill, 2018

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Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has signed into law the Computer Misuse and Cyber crimes Bill 2018 that criminalizes abuse of persons on social media, removing the legal lacuna that existed.

The Act which spells out stiff punishment to cyber criminals provides for timely and effective detection, prohibition, prevention, response, investigation and prosecution of computer and cyber crimes.

This includes search and seizure of stored computer data, record of and access to seized data, production order for data, expedited preservation, partial disclosure, real-time collection and interception of data.

The Act establishes the National Computer and Cyber crimes Coordination Committee and facilitates international co-operation in dealing with computer and cyber crime matters.

It deals with offences relating to computer systems including but not limited to unauthorised access, unauthorised interference, unauthorised interception, unauthorised disclosure of passwords, cyber espionage, false publications, child pornography, cyber terrorism and wrongful distribution of obscene or intimate images.

The Act also deals with computer forgery, computer fraud, cyber harassment, publication of false information, cyber squatting, identity theft and impersonation, phishing, interception of electronic messages or money transfers, willful misdirection of electronic messages and fraudulent use of electronic data among other cyber crimes.

President Kenyatta also assented to the Public Trustee (Amendment) Bill, 2018. This Bill amends various provisions of the Public Trustee Act, bringing it into conformity with the Constitution.

The Bills were presented to the President for signing by National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi.

Present during the signing at State House, Nairobi, were Deputy President William Ruto, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale, Attorney General Paul Kihara Kariuki and Solicitor General Kennedy Ogeto.