COLOMBO: Sri Lankan Cabinet on Tuesday granted approval to the proposals to draft two bills on cyber security laws, aimed at cracking down on terrorist groups and criminals using cyber space and electronic communication for anti-social activities.
The proposals to draft a bill named the ‘Defence Cyber Commands Act’ and a bill for imposing cyber protection laws were made by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa as the Minister of Defence and the Ministry of Technology.
A Cabinet note said with the development of electronic communication, terrorist groups and criminals have tended to use cyber space and electronic communication for terrorist activities, organised crimes and anti-social activities.
“The electronic communication across cyber space has been recognised as a crucial factor that can directly affect national security,” it said.
Therefore, it has been vital to formulate new laws today, covering all sectors for ensuring national security including the required provisions so that the operations performed by cyber protection units which are established at the institutional level at present by the three — armed forces, Police and other agencies,” it said.
The second draft bill is intended to create a regulatory framework and a national cyber security strategy.
Both these draft bills will provide for the establishment of the Sri Lanka Cyber Protection Agency, which will work in conjunction with other agencies.
Tuesday’s Cabinet decision comes amid investigations into the controversial loss of highly classified data from the Sri Lankan Government Cloud — to the tune of up to 2TB — that was maintained by the National Medicines Regulatory Authority.