Zambia: A safe cyberspace for girls is required.

According to the government, there is a need to create a safe cyberspace for girls because they are more likely than boys to experience violence, verbal and sexual abuse.

Acting Mufulira District Commissioner Grace Mwinga says that because of the COVID -19 pandemic, which has resulted in increased internet usage among young people for learning purposes, a number of girls are becoming victims of cyber harassment, highlighting the need to protect them.

Speaking during the International day of the girl child commemoration in Mufulira, held under the theme:” “digital generation, our generation,” Ms Mwinga said there is a need to equip girls with information of using the internet safely and responsibly.

Ms Mwinga noted that internet exposure also leads to negative effects such as reduced study time, reduced family interaction time and psychological problems such as depression.

Meanwhile, Mufulira District Child Protection Committee Chairperson, Bwalya Chitambala said the new Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act will go a long way in protecting children especially girls from sexual harassment online.

Mr Chitambala said usage of the internet is inevitable in this generation hence the need for suitable legislature that protects children from abuse online.

In its cybercrime and cybercrimes bill government this year introduced a new law on cybercrime mainly to ensure the provision of cyber security in the country as well as provide for the protection of persons against cybercrime.

The Bill also provides for child online protection, facilitate identification, declaration and protection of critical information infrastructure and provides provide for the collection of and preservation of evidence of computer and network related crime, among others.

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