Uganda Now Monitoring Internet Use

July 23, 2013

KAMPALA, Uganda, July 22 (UPI) — The Ugandan government said Monday it would start monitoring Internet activity to protect the public from emerging national security issues.

James Saaka, director of Uganda’s National Information Technology Authority, said the government would monitor conversations online to protect the public against cybercrimes.

“What is there to hide anyway? Most of the information people call private is basic information,” he was quoted by The Daily Monitor newspaper in Uganda as saying. “We have seen attacks. Many people are suffering but they cannot speak.”

Cyberattacks have emerged as a new threat to national security. The U.S. government said it believed the Chinese military targeted sensitive defense networks early this year. The Chinese government denied the allegations.

Monitor Publications Ltd., parent company of Ugandan newspaper The Daily Monitor, issued an apology in May after its offices were raided by national security forces. It said its editorial policy had been violated when it published a feature alleging orders were given to kill anyone who stated opposition to Muhoozi Kainerugaba, son of Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.

The United Nations in June expressed concern about press freedom in Uganda.