Press release: ISPA Offers Cooperation to KZN-Based Police Taskforce

Published on: 2009-02-19

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The Internet Service Providers’ Association of SA (ISPA) has held a workshop and training session with a KwaZulu-Natal-based police taskforce on the prevention of child pornography, prostitution and human trafficking as part of its commitment to helping law enforcement authorities fight crime.

ISPA’s cooperation with the South African Police Service (SAPS) inter-sectoral task team in KwaZulu-Natal builds on a long and constructive relationship between the industry body and South African law enforcers. The training sessions aimed to help members of the team understand the technical workings of the Internet more clearly, as well as how they can potentially use online resources to aid them in their work.

The training session placed particularly heavy emphasis on the obligations that ISPs face under the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-related Information Act. ISPA aimed to equip the police with knowledge about the records that ISPs are obliged to store, their obligation to monitor the content that users send and receive on their networks, as well as the conditions under which they are willing and able to give authorities access to this information.

During the workshop, ISPA’s representatives held live technical demonstrations to help task force members identify the devices (such as USB drives, micro SD cards, portable hard drives) that suspects may use to store information. Informal discussions were held about how ISPA and the broader ICT industry could help the task team by proving it with technical skills and support. These include helping the police with identifying expert witnesses, providing technical assistance during raids (identifying devices, for example) and offering training programmes.

Says Mike Silber, one of ISPA’s regulatory advisors: “South Africa’s ISPs are all committed to helping the authorities fight crime in any way that they can. We are especially determined to help the authorities stamp out child pornography that is distributed across the Internet. ISPA is more than willing to share its technical and legal expertise with the police since we all have vested interests in the fight against crime.”

Further Information

For further information, please contact the ISPA secretariat on the Contact ISPA page.