- Experts call for increased investment in internet security
- As CBN, EFCC, CDS, others brainstorm
Information Technology (IT) professionals have again reiterated why the country has to invest significantly in cyber security, develop local skills, and take IT more seriously.
The professionals under the umbrella of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) said these are necessary in order to combat the current incidence of internet fraud in Nigeria.
Professor Adesina Sodiya, NCS President, speaking at the Annual Cyber Security Forum and Workshop organised by NCS in Abuja this week, said that the workshop was to provide a platform for experts to come together and discuss how the nation’s cyber security challenges could be solved.
The event was attended by representatives of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Chief of Defence Staff, among other top government institutions and functionaries.
According to Sodiya, “A lot is going on in the financial and other sectors. You just heard from the EFCC guy where he confirmed that they are facing a lot of challenges in the area of cyber security. The issue is that so many of our young men, mostly due to unemployment are taking into cybercrimes. If you know what our youths can do, you would be amazed.”
Speaking further, he recommended that:
The first thing we need to do to address the issue of cyber insecurity is to invest more in cyber security protection. Critical information infrastructure protection. Some people in government, still do not know the level of threat that we have and even when some IT professionals are mentioning these threats, they feel that they want to use the opportunity to get money and so on and so forth but, the truth remains that we need to invest more on cyber security.
“We also need to truly make cyber security a business. Some of these guys that are experts, we should find a way of harnessing their skills for something that is go for the nation.
“Then again, government should take the issue of IT very seriously. The issue of IT is not something they should play with. Look at what happened to INEC, we told them that they needed to prepare well for cyber security. We sent proposals to them. Eventually, one of the things that affected the 2023 general elections was cyberattack.
“And one great thing in cyber security is that if today you have a barrier that is stopping criminals from in infiltrating, it doesn’t mean that that protective will work tomorrow. Because these bad guys will continue to try until they are successful and that is why cyber security strategies must be evolving, must be dynamic.
“Lastly, we need more experts in cyber security in this country. Even the few we have are leaving this country because they make more money abroad.
“We thank the Ministry of Education and the NUC for approval cyber security in our universities. We now have BSC in cyber security that will also assist in developing experts.
Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said the apex bank had also taken various measures over the years in response to the challenges posed by cyber threats.
He however, noted that while much had been done so far, it’s an obvious fact that the war is far from ended.
Represented by Ifeanyi Muonagor, Head, Cyber Security Operations Center at CBN, Emefiele said:
The more digital innovations we adopt to make life easier and better, the more the bad actors search for ways of compromising them for their nefarious ends. Hence, it is expedient that we do not relent in the quest for better education in computing, information technology and cybersecurity as you are doing by the avenue of this conference.”
NCS organises the annual Cybersecurity Forum as a platform for stakeholders to discuss the latest strategies and tools to prevent and respond to cyber threats.