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Handling Requests from Law Enforcement Authorities

(Version 1 - 31 March 2020)

1. Preamble

AFRINIC Ltd (AFRINIC), in its role as a Regional Internet Registry (RIR), is bestowed with a mandate to administer information relating to Internet number resources on behalf of the Internet community. In order to carry out this function, AFRINIC maintains both publicly available and confidential information, voluntarily submitted by its members when applying for Internet Number Resources. Under specific circumstances, Law Enforcement Authorities (LEAs) may officially request for the communication of such information.

This document outlines the procedure AFRINIC will follow with regards to:

  • Requests for information about individual AFRINIC members by LEAs.
  • Requests or orders by LEAs for specific action to be taken by AFRINIC.
  • Seizure of AFRINIC’s equipment or property as part of an LEA’s investigation.


2. Member Information

To better assist LEAs in their request for information, AFRINIC considers the following two types of information would be the subject of such requests

  • AFRINIC member information that is publicly available
  • AFRINIC member information that is not publicly available, including members’ personal and organisational information and any other non-public information.


2.1. AFRINIC Member Information that is Publicly Available

AFRINIC member information that is public can always be accessed by third parties, including LEAs. Such publicly available information may be any information that is accessible through the AFRINIC website, including information or records that are publicly available through the AFRINIC WHOIS database at the time of the request.

Upon receiving a request for information, AFRINIC will direct an LEA to this publicly available information. AFRINIC will assist LEAs in finding the appropriate public information, and in interpreting it if need be.


2.2. AFRINIC Member Information that is not Publicly Available

AFRINIC is contractually and lawfully bound to protect the confidentiality of any non-public information submitted by its members. Accordingly, AFRINIC will not provide member information that is not publicly available to LEAs on its own volition.

Member information that is not publicly available will only be provided to LEAs upon the production to AFRINIC of any binding order issued by a Mauritian court to this effect or any other legally binding order produced to AFRINIC by a Republic of Mauritius-based LEA.

AFRINIC reserves itself the right to seek and obtain relevant legal advice before providing any information sought by LEAs.

LEAs and other organisations operating outside of The Republic of Mauritius are kindly required to follow the applicable Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties (MLATs) procedures as provided for in the Mutual Assistance in Criminal and Related Matters Act of 2003.


3. Requests or Orders for AFRINIC to perform a specific action

AFRINIC may be asked by LEAs and other governmental agencies, including police forces and regulatory agencies, to perform a specific action, for example, a modification of the information registered for specific Internet number resources. In such circumstances, AFRINIC shall be bound by the overriding need to protect the confidentiality of the information submitted to it by its members.

Additionally, as AFRINIC is bound by a registration agreement with its members, AFRINIC will not be able to modify, delete or add registration information without a legally enforceable order under laws of The Republic of Mauritius. Before AFRINIC proceeds with any specific action, AFRINIC will notify members who are the subject of such a request of such changes unless a legally binding order or request expressly forbids such notification.

Requests or orders for specific actions from LEAs and other national authorities operating outside The Republic of Mauritius will only be considered where the applicable Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties (MLATs) procedures have been complied with. 

An order or request shall be served in person to AFRINIC’s legal address:

11th Floor, Standard Chartered BankTower,
Cybercity, Ebène, 72201
Fax: +230 466 67 58


However, where AFRINIC has legitimate grounds to challenge such an order, it shall reserve itself the right to do so and apply for injunctive relief to that effect.


4. Seizure of AFRINIC's Equipment or Property as Part of an Investigation

Where AFRINIC is served with an Order from a competent Court for the seizure of its equipment or property, in the context of a lawful criminal investigation, AFRINIC will comply with such order. However, where AFRINIC has legitimate grounds to challenge such an order, it shall reserve itself the right to do so and apply for injunctive relief to that effect.


5. Transparency Report

For reasons of transparency, AFRINIC will publish on its website statistics related to requests for information, orders and investigations received from LEAs.
Such statistics may include the number of requests received, the countries from which the requests originated and the number of members and database records involved, but will not include identifying information about the individual members involved.


Date and time in Mauritius -