Africa and Europe: Cyber governance lessons

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This Policy Insights examines the lessons the AU can learn from the EU in the area of cyber governance.

Summary:

  • Legislation and regulation are necessary to both safeguard the rights of citizens on the internet and protect them from cybercrime and the unauthorised use of personal data.
  • Governments have to maintain a balance between ensuring that there are appropriate regulations allowing them to deal with cybercrime, on the one hand, without infringing on online freedoms or providing opportunities for security services to spy on their citizens on the other.
  • Debates on internet governance start with its very definition, which is reflected in various perspectives, approaches and policy interests.
  • Since the adoption of the AU  Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection in 2014, only 14 countries have signed it and a mere seven have ratified it.
  • The Convention imposes obligations on signatories to establish legal, policy and regulatory measures for promoting cybersecurity governance and controlling cybercrime.
  • It is important that the AU recognise the importance of a multi-stakeholder dimension for cyber governance.
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