Information is one of the most important assets over which an organisation may possess. Since most companies have made the move from the physical world into cyberspace this asset has been under attack from a multitude of new fronts. Consequently, laws relating to information technology has propelled itself into the limelight. However, because of the fact that information technology law is a complex, dynamic and multifaceted discipline of which no one component may be ignored, the effective governance of this legal discipline is pivotal for any companies wishing not only to survive in the information age, but also to prosper.
Companies are being placed under increased pressure by means of new laws, regulations and standards, to ensure that they comply with recent information technology-related laws, regulations and standards. South Africa is increasingly focusing attention specifically on data protection and information security. This trend is in line with the approach taken by the rest of the international community, who are giving serious consideration to information security and the governance thereof. As companies are waking up to the benefits offered by the digital world, information security governance is emerging as a business issue pivotal within the e-commerce environment. Most companies make use of electronic communications systems such as e-mail, faxes, and the world-wide-web when performing their day-to-day business activities. However, all electronic transactions and communications inevitably involve information being used in one form or another. It may therefore be observed that information permeates every aspect of the business world. Consequently, for businesses not only to thrive in the information age, but also to survive, requires of each and every company to have a thorough understanding of how and when, cyber (information technology) laws, regulations and standards will be applicable to them, and perhaps more importantly, what impact it will have on its operations.