Legal Advice

Governance and IT

In South Africa, governance and IT have gained significant attention due to the increasing reliance on technology in various sectors, including government and businesses. South Africa has established legal and regulatory framework to govern IT practices. The Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) and the Cybercrimes Act are examples of legislation aimed at safeguarding personal data and combating cybercrime.

The Department of Communications & Digital Technologies oversees IT regulations in the country. The Ministry has programmes that assist government and businesses to ensure that they are well equipped in IT.

How companies can control IT governance – Effective IT governance requires the establishment of governance structures within organizations. This includes the appointment of IT steering committees, the allocation of responsibilities, and the implementation of IT policies and procedures.

Why it is important -
Organisations are required to implement appropriate measures to secure personal information and ensure compliance with data protection regulations.

South Africa recognises the importance of digital transformation. The government has initiatives such as the Digital Economy Masterplan and the Smart City Framework to promote digitalisation and harness the benefits of emerging technologies.

Governance and AI

Governance and Artificial Intelligence refers to the policies, frameworks, and practices that govern the ethical and responsible development, deployment, and use of AI technologies.

The South African Government's AI Framework, released in 2019, emphasises the importance of responsible and ethical AI practices, including fairness, transparency, accountability, and respect for human rights.

In 2022 the government launched the Artificial Intelligence Institute of South Africa. The launch is to assist government in being one of the countries on the forefront of the 4IR. The Artificial Intelligence Institute of South Africa plays a pivotal role on how AI is implemented in the country.

South Africa is in the process of developing a regulatory framework to govern AI. The proposed Data and AI Authority Bill aims to establish a regulatory body that will oversee data protection, AI ethics, and governance, ensuring compliance with ethical and legal standards. Upon its enactment, businesses will be obliged to comply with the Act.