- Objective of the Project
- Target Group
- Present Status
- Legislation having an impact on ICT development in Sri Lanka
- Historical Development of the Project
- Other Resources and Links
e-Laws project is intended to create the enabling legal environment for the development of Information and Communication Technology(ICT) in Sri Lanka, through the enactment of the required laws by Parliament in order to facilitate e-Government, e-Business as well as to attract ICT related foreign direct investment.
Ministries, Government Departments, Legal & Judicial Sector, Commercial, Banking, Shipping and corporate sector
Several legislation under this component have recently been passed by the Parliament of Sri Lanka. The Electronic Transactions Act was passed into law in March 2006 and became effective on October 1st 2007. This is an Act to “Recognize and Facilitate the Formation of Contracts, the Creation and Exchange of Data messages, Electronic Documents, Electronic Records and other Communications in Electronic Form in Sri Lanka ; and to provide for the appointment of a certification authority and accreditation of certification service providers ; and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto”. Several Sector specific Certification Service Providers (CSPs) are currently being established. The foremost amongst them is the CSP for the Banking Sector being established by Lanka Clear.
Computer Crimes Act was passed into law in May 2007 and became effective on 15th July 2008. This Act provides for the identification of computer crimes and provides a procedure for the investigations and prevention of such crime.
Further, the Intellectual Property Act No.36 of 2003 provides the required, Intellectual Property framework for the protection of Information Technology products and services. Under section 6 thereof computer software (defined as “Computer programs”) is given Copyright under the category of literary, artistic, and scientific works. Unlike previously, the scope of fair use (Copying) of software has been clarified under section 12(7) read with section 12(1) of the Act. Intellectual Property Act also contains a separate chapter for the protection of integrated circuits.
- Information and Communication Technology Act No.27 of 2003
- Evidence (Special Provisions) Act No.14 of 1995
- Intellectual Property Act No. 36 of 2003 (Sections related to Copyright)
- Electronic Transactions Act No. 19 of 2006
- Computer Crimes Act No. 24 of 2007
- Payment And Settlement Systems Act, No. 28 of 2005
- Payment Devices Frauds Act No.30 of 2006
Pursuant to a decision of the Cabinet of Ministers, on 26th October 2004 ICTA was required to recommend to the Cabinet of Ministers, the appropriate policy and regulatory framework necessary for the implementation of the e-Sri Lanka Development project and to support ICT Development. The Information and Communication Technology Act No. 27 of 2003 (as amended by Act No.33 of 2008) requires ICTA (as the successor to CINTEC) to facilitate the Implementation of Strategies and Programs for Information and Communication Technology development in Sri Lanka.
In 1986 CINTEC (Computer and Information Technology Council of Sri Lanka) established the Committee on Law and Computers. This committee was supported by the Attorney General, the Legal Draftsman, Senior Legal Practitioners and legal academia. This committee eventually became responsible for the evolution of the entire ICT legal reforms process in Sri Lanka which continues to date as a component of the e-Sri Lanka Development Project known as the “e-Laws” program, being implemented by ICTA.
Evidence (Special Provisions) Act No.14 of 1995
CINTEC Committee on Law & Computers undertook a comprehensive review to reform the law of evidence. The committee found the need to include computer related evidence to the Evidence Ordinance of 1895. As a consequence, the Evidence (Special Provisions) Act No 14 of 1995 was enacted by the Parliament of Sri Lanka.
Computer Crimes Act No. 24 of 2007
The Computer Crimes Bill was presented as legislation to the Parliament of Sri Lanka on 23rd August 2005. CINTEC initially prepared the Computer Crimes legislative proposal on 16th of August 1997. After several reviews and modifications to the Bill it has been enacted as the Computer Crimes Act No.24 of 2007. Provisions in this Act introduced the criminal implication regarding unauthorised access to a computer, computer program, data or information and unauthorised use of a computer.
Electronic Transactions Act No. 19 of 2006
In 1999 a sub committee was appointed by CINTEC Committee on Law & Computers to reform the law to facilitate e-Commerce and electronic transactions. Initial Draft proposal based on the UNCITRAL model Laws and other International legal principles, was submitted in July 2000. However, the draft bill was not finalized. In 2004 ICTA conducted a review on the reports and the drafts and the Cabinet of Ministers on 22nd September 2004 authorised ICTA to finalise legislation through Legal Draftsman's Department. Consequently, Legal Draftsman’s Department prepared the Electronic Transactions Bill with legal and policy inputs from ICTA. This Bill was enacted by the parliament of Sri Lanka as the Electronic Transactions Act No.19 of 2006.
ICTA has been addressing requirements in the area of Data Protection. In 1998 CINTEC Committee on Law & Computers identified issues regarding Data Protection. ICTA has eventually become the responsible government body for implementing data protection policies. As a result, number of data protection guidelines which are to be used by both public and government sectors are being formulated.
- Country Report : Status of ICT Laws in Sri Lanka (as of June 2004)
- IMPACT of Recent IT Legislation - BASL - FINAL revised
- Software Protection and e-Commerce
- From Computer Law to E-Laws Evolution of ICT Reforms Process in Sri Lanka- published in “Partners in Progress” A felicitation Volume in honour of Vidya Jyothi Prof. V.K. Samaranayake
... Lanka (ICTA) and the Council of Europe, the Minister said: "The computer is both a boon and a bane, but the law enforcement officers should be able to implement justice. For this, we need to have trained...
…Cyber crime laws need to align with int'l standards Anjana Samarasinghe "In any country regulations imposed on cyber crimes need to be aligned with international standards," Head of Economic Crime Division...