The Nigerian Government and Stakeholders in cyber security sector have brainstormed on the best ways to deploy cyber security to tackle terrorism, banditry, kidnapping.
This was the main topic of discuss at the Cyber Secure Nigeria Conference 2022, organised by Security Experts Association of Nigeria (CSEAN) in Abuja.
The Country’s Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Pantami emphasised the need for a more proactive cyber security to protect Nigeria’s infrastructure and strengthen the confidence of the citizens in the fight against insecurity.
According to the Minister, “our security depends largely on this cyber security system. Therefore, the security of our cyber space is synonymous to our national security. We can also use it to gather a lot of intelligence and do a lot of things to address the national security challenges that we are facing.”
He noted that cyber attacks have grown in numbers, as the attacks exceeded $6trillion and is projected to reach $10trillion by 2025.
“So as a country, we have the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), which has service infrastructure as a key pillar. We need to secure the cyber space to build confidence in our citizens to use these services. So, the NDEPS is being implemented by agencies under the ministry to help our citizens to proactively monitor the cyber space and be more cyber security conscious,” he explained.
The Minister was represented by the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa.
In his remarks, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (Rtd), said that as part of efforts to ensure safe operations in cyberspace, the Nigerian Government enacted the Cybercrimes Act 2015 as the legal framework to codify criminality in cyberspace.
He explained that the development and implementation of the National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy (NCPS) defines the roadmap for cybersecurity in Nigeria.
The NSA said, “as a key component part of the Strategy, enhancing our capacity to secure the Nigerian cyberspace would to a large extent augment efforts at tackling the myriad of physical security challenges bedeviling the nation.I must note that the Federal Government has made efforts to implement the Cybercrimes Act 2015 with the establishment of ngCERT and National Digital Forensic Laboratory among others, with a view to ensuring the safety and security of the cyberspace as well as provide timely support to security and law enforcement agencies,” he said.
He emphasised that the Cyber Secure Nigeria Conference 2022 is timely, as his office is galvanizing efforts to strengthen current drive to tackle physical security challenges in Nigeria.
The NSA was represented by Major General Samad Akesode.
President of CSEAN, Remi Afon, in his presentation, called for the deployment of technology especially a more proactive use of cyber security to tackle the challenges.
He urged more poliitical will on the part of the government to fight insecurity to save the citizens from constant attacks, killing and kidnapping.
The CSEAN President stated that Criminal elements cannot succeed in their attacks without the use of information and communications technologies (ICT), specifically, the use of mobile phones, the internet, and other electronic media they sometimes use to record their activities via video to pass their messages across.
“They use these technologies to commit, incite, recruit for, fund, or plan terrorist, kidnapping, and other criminal acts. Every crime committed, be it terrorism or kidnapping is preceded by a planning stage, an effective counter-surveillance program by the government will increase the chance of intervening or detecting a threat as soon as possible.
“GPS tracking, Drones, Artificial Intelligence, Digital Forensic Investigation, Lawful Interception of electronic communication as well as the use of social media to collect open-source information and digital evidence can be proactively deployed to stem the tide of insecurity,” he added.
The theme for this year’s conference is, “Cybersecurity: An Imperative in Tackling Insecurity in Nigeria.”