Kenya Third Most Targeted Country By Cyber Attacks in Africa as CA Moves to Cull Threat

Director Internal Audit , CA, Ms. Rosalind Muriithi

In 2018, cyber-attacks directed at Kenya stood at 7.7 million. In 2023, the attacks have sky-rocked to a high of 444 million, ranking Kenya among the top three most targeted countries in the region, alongside South Africa and Nigeria.

The ever-evolving and increasing risk of cyber threats in the country demand more resources in terms of infrastructure, training in cybersecurity skills as well as response and recovery strategy. Recent cyber-attacks in Kenya have exposed some major issues with our cyber security. There is a need for the Government and major stakeholders to come up with and implement best cybersecurity practices as the level of frequency and severity of such threats increase.

One key area that should be addressed is how to attract and get the right talent to boost our cybersecurity efforts. In order to achieve this, the Government and key stakeholders should work together to come up with incentives and programs that promote proper training to reduce the skills gap.

CA joins forces with Huawei, KCSFA to train young techies on cybersecurity skills

The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) held its Cybersecurity Bootcamp and Hackathon Series 2023 program in Kisumu.  The joint initiative with Huawei and the Kenya Cybersecurity and Forensics Association (KCSFA) seeks to address the growing need for cybersecurity professionals in the emerging digital landscape. The exercise benefitted over 200 young techies from different learning institutions in Nyanza.

The hackathon series is part of the ongoing initiative by the CA and Huawei to develop local cybersecurity capacity toward safeguarding the Kenyan digital economy as it grows. It provides a platform for participants to showcase their expertise and knowledge in the cybersecurity domain.

The Hackathons are both a training grounds and skills harnessing platform for future cybersecurity experts targeting University and College students by design.

“We hope that the initiative will inspire these young innovators to select a discipline related to cybersecurity as they as they progress with careers in technology and keep our country safe in the cyberspace,” said Venessa Kawira, Huawei Kenya IT Talent Academy Manager

Speaking on Saturday in Kisumu during the award ceremony held in Kisumu, Ms. Rosalind Muriithi, Director Internal Audit at Communications Authority of Kenya said that the government is accelerating its efforts to disrupt cyber threats, fix newly discovered vulnerabilities and counter emerging threats and protect Kenyans.

“Government’s top priority is to safeguard our digital economy from cybersecurity challenges like data breaches, hacking attempts, identity theft, and malware attacks, etc. For this purpose, it is crucial that our skilling efforts help build a skilled workforce that is capable of effectively protecting and defending digital systems and networks,” said Ms. Muriithi.

“As Kenya endures its digital transformation, it is evident that collaborative efforts from both the public and private sectors are critical in securing a digital nation and protect individuals and businesses from cyber threats,” she added

“Our country has been at the forefront of adopting emerging technologies and is a leading Nation globally on matters of technology, innovations and internet penetration. For this reason, our country finds itself at a unique situation that demands more localized solutions to the equally unique challenges that we face. It’s in this light that KCSFA – Kenya Cyber Security & Forensics Association has partnered with the National KE-CIRT/CC under the Communications Authority of Kenya to deliver the Hackathons at the regional and national levels,” said Mr. Njoroge Kinyanjui of KCSFA.

In addition, there is a call for strong public-private partnerships to improve national security and advance innovation that protects critical systems and data as cyber attacks continue to rise.

“I firmly believe that collaborations like that of CA, Huawei and other partners will play a pivotal role in nurturing talent and Young Kenyans will get better access to skills that are more relevant in this fast-changing digital age,’’ said Fredrick Wahome, Vice president of KCSFA.

CA, Huawei and KCSFA will be holding the hackathon in various counties in the coming months with Nyeri County hosting the next edition. The top teams from the regional finals will converge in Mombasa for the October Cybersecurity month national Conference. The annual conference is held so to create awareness on cybersecurity.

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