Home Big Story ISSAN to Nigerians: It’s getting tougher to fight cybercrime

ISSAN to Nigerians: It’s getting tougher to fight cybercrime

ISSAN to Nigerians: It’s getting tougher to fight cybercrime
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The war against cybercrime around the world keeps getting tougher by the day, Information Security Society of Africa-Nigeria (ISSAN), has warned Nigerians.

Dr David  Isiavwe, President of tech security group, ISSAN, said in Lagos that while the war against cybercrime is getting tougher, there has been some notable improvement in efforts to combat misdeeds on the Internet.

“What I can tell you categorically is that the environment is tough both locally in Nigeria, in Africa and the world at large. The cyber thieves are not relenting but we are doing our best in collaboration with other stakeholders to ensure that the bad guys do not win the war”, Isaivwe tells attendees at the monthly meeting of the tech security body in Lagos.

Statistics reviewed last week at the retreat organised by the Nigerian Electronic Fraud Forum (NEFF) also reveals that  attacks on banks are growing but the success rate is reducing and in some cases it has reduced drastically, the ISSAN President says.

“What I can tell you categorically is that the environment is tough both locally in Nigeria, in Africa and the world at large. The cyber thieves are not relenting but we are doing our best in collaboration with other stakeholders to ensure that the bad guys do not win the war”, Isaivwe tells attendees at the monthly meeting of the tech security body in Lagos.

ISSAN-President-Dr.-David-Isiavwe-and-MD-Digital-Jewels-Mrs.-Doyin-Odunfa-flanked-by-some-Members-at-the-General-Meeting-of-Information-Security-Society-of-Afica-Nigeria-ISSAN.
Dr David Isiavwe ISSAN-President (third from right) and Mrs Doyin Odunfa, MD, Digital Jewels (third from left) flanked by some members of ISSAN at the general meeting of Information Security Society of Africa Nigeria (ISSAN).

On what ISSAN will be doing differently in 2017 in continuation of its efforts in creating cybersecurity awareness and overall sensitisation of the security in cyberspace for the Nigerian economy, Isiavwe says the body will review what it has done in the past and they can improve on them.

“You must have heard the ISSAN Legal Adviser who said something about printing about a hundred thousand copies of the awareness tips and distribute them across the major cities in the country. That’s just one thing we plan to do differently, It may not be hard copies but we must find a way to disseminate the message across all the major cities in the country”, he says.

“And we also want to push more forcefully the use of two factor authentication devices and mechanisms. That way, even if they steal something that you have, they cannot steal something that you are. Even if they steal something that you know, because sometimes it’s about something that you know, fraudulently they will not be able to take what you are and that will authenticate the transaction. So those fraudulent transactions will not be successful” the ISSAN President says.

According to Isiavwe, “we want to see more of that and then we want to move into the educational institutions, secondary and primary schools. We want to get the young people know that cyberspace is a space where they can operate freely but with some caution, with some level of dos and donts, some guidelines, so they can behave appropriately in a safe and secure way while they watch their movies, play their games and all what they do on the Internet.”

The last meeting of year 2016 for ISSAN was well-attended by members and the President hinted that there will be an election in 2017 to usher in new executives. He asked ISSAN members who are interested in being part of the new executive in 2017 to feel free to declare their interest.

Also speaking at the event, Mrs Adedoyin Odunfa, Managing Director of Digital Jewels, a Nigerian technology consulting company says that massive training and development is needed to address the shortage of skills that exists among information security professionals in Nigeria, and all over the world.

The Digital Jewel MD advocates that part of the efforts should involve creating information security awareness from primary schools up to universities while also encouraging students to pursue careers in information security and add information security into the educational curriculum in Nigeria.

Mrs Doyin Odunfa MD Digital Jewels and ISSAN President Dr David Isiavwe at the meeting held in Lagos
Mrs Adedoyin Odunfa MD Digital Jewels and ISSAN President Dr David Isiavwe at the meeting held in Lagos

“If we ensure that the universities, the secondary schools, even down to primary schools that there were some basic awareness of information security, that would help. It would also help to open up students to consider information security as a career because some of the things we do at Digital Jewels is that we go from university to university to tell them about the prospects IT careers, information security careers offer”, she says.

To address this, Odunfa says “the first step is to be conscious that that shortage exists, to be conscious that breaches will be on the rise for the next few years and therefore to strategically position ourselves in Nigeria to develop those skills to counter the breaches both on the private and public sector levels.

According to the Digital Jewels MD, “we have a skills shortage for information security professionals in Nigeria and all over the world and this can be addressed by training and development.”

According to her, ”widespread training in both information security and general business competencies because I think the point is made that even though we have quite a number of information security specialists, some of them lack that business context and soft skills.”

To address this, Odunfa says “the first step is to be conscious that that shortage exists, to be conscious that breaches will be on the rise for the next few years and therefore to strategically position ourselves in Nigeria to develop those skills to counter the breaches both on the private and public sector levels.

“If we are to build information security into the curriculum in tertiary, secondary and even elementary levels, it will help. If organisations also were to have some kind of information security development programme for their staff, not just on the course skills, but also in general business skills, it will help.

“So I think the first thing is to realise that the gap exists. The gap is not going anywhere. It will get larger and larger except we do something about it. If we don’t do something about it, we are going to be the worse off because organisations and government will get hit and we won’t know what to do about it” Odunfa says.

 

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Donatus Anichukwueze Technology Journalist at Technology Times Media Phone No: 08074016066 e-mail: donatus.anichukwueze@technologytimes.ng

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