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Electronic Communications and Transactions Act, 2002 (Act No. 25 of 2002)

Chapter XII : Cyber Inspectors

82. Power to inspect, search and seize


(1) A cyber inspector may, in the performance of his or her functions, at any reasonable time, without prior notice and on the authority of a warrant issued in terms of section 83(1), enter any premises or access an information system that has a bearing on an investigation and—
(a) search those premises or that information system;
(b) search any person on those premises if there are reasonable grounds for believing that the person has personal possession of an article, document or record that has a bearing on the investigation;
(c) take extracts from, or make copies of any book, document or record that is on or in the premises or in the information system and that has a bearing on the investigation;
(d) demand the production of and inspect relevant licences and registration certificates as provided for in any law;
(e) inspect any facilities on the premises which are linked or associated with the information system and which have a bearing on the investigation;
(f) have access to and inspect the operation of any computer or equipment forming part of an information system and any associated apparatus or material which the cyber inspector has reasonable cause to suspect is or has been used in connection with any offence;
(g) use or cause to be used any information system or part thereof to search any data contained in or available to such information system;
(h) require the person by whom or on whose behalf the cyber inspector has reasonable cause to suspect the computer or information system is or has been used, or require any person in control of, or otherwise involved with the operation of the computer or information system to provide him or her with such reasonable technical and other assistance as he or she may require for the purposes of this Chapter; or
(i) make such inquiries as may be necessary to ascertain whether the provisions of this Act or any other law on which an investigation is based, have been complied with.


(2) A person who refuses to co-operate or hinders a person conducting a lawful search and seizure in terms of this section is guilty of an offence.


(3) The Criminal Procedure Act, 1977 (Act No. 51 of 1977), applies with the necessary changes to searches and seizures in terms of this Act.


(4) For purposes of this Act, any reference in the Criminal Procedure Act, 1977, to "premises" and "article" includes an information system as well as data messages.