Recently, I came across an article in the Punch that left me deeply concerned about the susceptibility of Nigerian businesses, individuals, and government agencies to cyberattacks.
The article reported how hackers infiltrated the National Population Commission (NPC) server, just months after the commission opened its portal for recruitment and other needs.
In today’s digital age, we all rely on technology for almost everything we do. From sending emails and making online purchases to storing sensitive information like our credit card details, addresses, and personal photographs, we have become accustomed to the convenience and efficiency that technology provides.
However, with this reliance comes a significant threat that most of us don’t consider as seriously as we should.
The world is changing rapidly, and with it, the source of a nation’s wealth. While hard minerals buried beneath the earth’s surface have traditionally been a significant source of income for many countries, a new paradigm is emerging.
The capacity of a nation’s residents to innovate and solve global problems is becoming increasingly important in determining its wealth.
Today, countries that are at the forefront of technological advancements and innovative thinking are the ones that are thriving, while those that rely solely on their natural resources are struggling to keep up or will do so in the future if they do not evolve.
The ability to create and implement cutting-edge solutions to complex problems such as climate change, healthcare, and energy production is becoming the new measure of a nation’s economic strength.
As such, it’s crucial for countries to invest in education, research and development, and entrepreneurial ecosystems to foster innovation and build a sustainable future for generations to come.
Africa is certainly on a path towards being a contributor to innovative solutions that have global value. With a growing tech industry and a young, tech-savvy population, our continent has the potential to become a major player in the world of innovation. However, to fully realise this potential, it must get its cybersecurity right. The rise of digital technologies and the internet has also brought with it new threats, and as more and more businesses are conducted online, the risk of data breaches, financial fraud, and other cybercrimes is increasing.
To build business solutions that people can trust without fear of breach of data, money, and other valuables, African governments and businesses must prioritise cybersecurity.
This includes investing in cybersecurity infrastructure, implementing robust data protection regulations, and creating a culture of cybersecurity awareness and best practices.
By doing so, Africa can build a reputation for safe and secure digital solutions, which can attract investment and help drive economic growth.
Ultimately, a strong cybersecurity posture is not only crucial for protecting individual and business assets but is also essential for building a sustainable and prosperous digital future for the continent.
Businesses must factor cybersecurity as an important part of their overall strategy, instead of treating it as a mere compliance requirement, like filing taxes or submitting annual reports.
To build business solutions that people can trust without fear of breach of data, money, and other valuables, African governments and businesses must invest in cybersecurity infrastructure, implement robust data protection regulations, and create a culture of cybersecurity awareness and best practices.
Cybersecurity has become an essential aspect of our daily lives, as individuals, businesses and as a nation.
The recent cyberattack on the National Population Commission’s server is just one example of how vulnerable we are to these threats. As we become increasingly reliant on technology, it’s crucial that we prioritise our cybersecurity infrastructure and create a culture of awareness and best practices.
This is especially important for Africa, a continent with a young and tech-savvy population that has the potential to contribute to innovative solutions with global value.
By getting its cybersecurity right, Africa can build a reputation for safe and secure digital solutions, which can attract investment and drive economic growth.
In essence, cybersecurity is not merely a box to check for compliance purposes, but rather, it is the fuel that will drive the engine of building a secure and thriving digital future for the continent.
*Oluwole Asalu is passionate about cybersecurity in the ICT space and writes from Lagos, Nigeria.