New cyber crimes agency may be created under fresh law

ISLAMABAD ( MEDIA )

The Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act 2014 has proposed the establishment of a new law enforcing agency for the purpose of investigation and prosecution of offences under this act. The News reported.

The draft law, which has been finalised by the Ministry of Information Technology in consultation with the Ministry of Law, states that the federal government shall designate the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), designate any other law enforcement agency or establish any new law enforcement agency as the special investigation agency for the purposes of investigation and prosecution of offences under this Act.

Regarding international cooperation, the draft law states that the federal government may cooperate with any foreign government, 24×7 network, any foreign agency or any international agency for the purposes of investigations or proceedings.

The federal government may also cooperate with foreign agencies concerning offences related to electronic system and data or for the collection of evidence in electronic form of an offence or obtaining expeditious preservation and disclosure of traffic data or data by means of an electronic system or real-time collection of traffic data associated with specified communications or interception of data or any other means, power, function or provisions under this Act.

Unless otherwise provided for under this Act the special investigation agency, the special investigating officer, prosecution and the court shall in all matters follow the procedure laid down in the Code to the extent that it is not inconsistent with any provision of this Act:

Provided that any police officer investigating an offence under this Act may seek assistance of the special investigation agency for any technical or forensic analysis of evidence.All investigating officers appointed under this Act or exercising any power, privilege, right or provision under this Act shall, at a minimum, hold a specialised qualification in digital forensics, information technology or computer science, in such terms as may be prescribed. No person whether a police officer, investigation officer or otherwise, other than an investigating officer of the special investigation agency shall investigate an offence with respect to, in connection with or under this Act. No person other than a prosecutor assigned by the special investigating agency shall prosecute any offence with respect to, in connection with or under this Act.

No court lower than the Court of Sessions, in accordance with the provisions of this Act in particular section 37, shall conduct the trial, hearing of all proceedings in respect of, related to or in connection with an offence under this Act.

No person, other than an investigating officer of the special investigation agency, shall exercise any power, including but not limited to arrest, access, search, seizure, preservation, production or real time collection or recording, under this Act, rules made there under or any other law, with respect to and in connection with any offence under this Act.No investigating officer shall exercise any power of arrest, access, search, seizure, preservation, production, or real time collection other than a power provided for under this Act.

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