Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) has raised questions over the legality of announcing ‘29 organizations’ as ‘critical information infrastructure’ under the jurisdiction of section 15 of ‘Digital Security Act (DSA)-2018’.
The TIB, better known as a civil society organization dedicated to fighting against corruption, made the statement in a press release signed by its Director Sheikh Manjur-E-Alam on Tuesday.
The TIB came up with the remarks two days after the government announced 29 organizations such as the Prime Minister's Office, central and state-owned banks, and the national identity and immigration departments as "critical information infrastructure", officially declaring illegal access to their information as punishable offence.
Claiming the list of the 29 organizations as questionable and misleading, the TIB said the list gave birth to some basic questions after being made public despite no support from state policy.
TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman said the government has been empowered with announcement of any computer system, network or information infrastructure as critical information infrastructure, according to DSA-2018.
“However, it is not clear in which standard the list of the 29 organizations was announced without including critical ministries like Defense, Home and Armed Forces,” he said.
Terming the list as imprudent, he said national parliament, judicial department, audit, health sector, customs and ports were not included in the list.
Iftekharuzzaman said the first and foremost duty of the country is now to formulate state and public security act.
The DSA will be used wrongly in future unless there is specific policy, he said.
Besides, a barrier will be created in collecting information from the enlisted 29 organizations under section 16 (3) of the DSA, the TIB executive director suspected.
The TIB hoped that the government will take initiative to amend the DSA to stop its misuse and ensure its effectiveness soon.
However, the anti-corruption watchdog did not mention the names of the enlisted 29 organizations in their release.