My cousin recently started out developing web applications. I asked him if he is planning to develop commercially or for the open-source arena. His answer basically came down to first for open-source with goal of later exploring commercial options. Then I asked him under which licence he will be developing the open-source applications and he was like “Wha-a-a-t?”
“This call may be recorded for quality purposes.“….Haven’t we all heard the voice on the other end of the line. I want to explore the legality of recorded telephone calls in the light of SA legislation.
Off the cuff, the first thing that comes to mind is constitutionality and secondly I can think of two pieces of legislation that might have an effect on telephone recording, namely the Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act, 2013, and the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Communication Related Information Act, 70 of 2002 (RICA). Before I look at legislative frameworks, let me consider why telephone calls are being recorded.
In the first part of this article I briefly gave my views on the following chapters in the King III Report and how I think it relates to ICT:
- Ethical leadership and corporate citizenship
- Boards and directors
- Audit committees
- The governance of risk
I did not consider The governance of information technology (IT) chapter, as this will form a separate and individual article. Let’s continue with the remaining chapters and I look forward to your engagements.
By now we all probably know what social media is and what it is all about. There are literally hundreds of social media platforms, from LinkedIn to FaceBook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and many more.
Businesses use it to build their brands, increase sales, improve customer service, distribute their content, and most probably a hundred other uses. On a personal level, social media platforms are used as an easy, affordable and quick way to connect with family and friends. People can now easily show others what’s going on in their lives, what they achieved, sharing news, pictures and videos.
I have read many debates on the need for social media in business versus the negative impacts of it on business. From most of the articles I have read, the common thread for this negativity of social media in business is the fact that the users do not know when to draw the line between social media for business and social media for personal use.
The question that I ask is whether we need social media laws?
Technology is an ever-changing landscape and a fast landscape might i can say. The law is also not static, but change is comparatively slower than technology and this is the basis for the disconnect between law and ICT.
The USA, in my opinion, is the “trend-setters” in technology law. From that it normally doesn’t take long before we see South Africa follow these trends. Therefore with the changes in Internet Law, I expect we will be seeing similar trends and it might be worthwhile giving some consideration to these.
My issue however, our courts not taking decisive actions in terms of internet law, thereby not creating law in South Africa.
By now most of us know about the broadband initiative coördinated and driven by The Western Cape Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism (DEDAT). The tender was awarded to Neotel and the goal is to make internet available to every citizen.I have personally dreamt about this since 1997. There are so many reasons why this is a requirement and it is a pity that Provincial and even National Government took so long to realise the value of this. Needless to say, it’s finally a reality and a great positive for the Western Cape citizens and economy in general! Another example of the Western Cape’s ability to drive technology in the country and that we are really the technology hub of South Africa.
So what more is there to say about this initiative? Well, I have a few things on my mind…
In the 2014 United States Supreme Court case, Riley v. California, it was unanimously decided that police cannot search digital information contained on a cell phone without a warrant.
What the decision basically comes down to is that it was unconstitutional and an infringement on the 4th and 5th Amendment of the American Constitution.
So what is the view from a South African perspective?
I was dumbstruck and believe me, it takes a lot to get me speechless… While reading through some article, I came across an issue that relating to “linking” to other websites. In the article reference was made to Standard Bank’s website Terms and Conditions of Access, which states that they DO NOT allow linking to their website without permission.
In a 2014 court case a Cape Townian man was caught for distributing(‘seeding’) a South African movie via a torrent website. I initially thought this was our first case relating to internet piracy, but after a little bit of research I found that another man was fined R5000 and 6 months imprisonment, suspended for five years, for pirating computer programs in 2001. The hype surrounding the 2014 case of the Cape Townian was probably because in 2001 torrents were not used that much and today downloading (piracy) has become more widely used.