17 January 2013

Nigeria: Security Group Tasks Stakeholders On Cyber Security

The President, Information Security Society of Africa-Nigeria (ISSAN) David Isiavwe, has called on all stakeholders to continue to fight cyber-crime, as more institutions and organisations adopt electronic means of transactions. In a chat with THISDAY, Isiavwe noted that the menace posed cybercrime calls for rapid action given the efforts being made by all parties to migrate al activities fully to electronic-based.

According to him, organisations must take necessary steps to secure that their data, systems and networks are fully protected, with confidentiality and integrity regardless of the form the data may take, whether electronic, print among others.

Isiavwe noted that man's dependency on the internet in terms of banking, aviation, navigation, warfare, banking, health, telecommunication, power systems, will continue to increase despite the security concerns, thus the need to take cyber-security as a priority.

He said: "Financial institutions, hospitals, telecommunication industries, corporations and private businesses usually amass a great deal of confidential information about their customers, employees, products, research findings and financial status which are collected, processed, stored on computers and transmitted across computer networks, and a breach could take place anyhow." He added that when any of the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data is impacted, security is said to have been breached, noting that some of the various threats to information security are very dangerous and disruptive while others are just a nuisance.

Isiavwe, thus, called on organisations to engage skilled consultants to fill the gap of checkmating threats to their officers where they do not have the technical resources in-house to identify, track, apprehend and punish cyber criminals through the courts. "Cyber security is a moving target. It's an evolving threat. As big data gets bigger, the threat of a cyber-attack gets bigger, so all hands must be on deck to fight them," he said. On his part, the Director of Security Assurance and Information Risk Management, Digital Encode Limited - an information security advisory and assurance company, Mr. Oluseyi Akindele said that many institutions in the country, including banking and government agencies, are vulnerable to different forms of attacks by cybercriminal.

Akindele who bemoaned the unavailability of a protection system to warn organisations of an attack or an intrusion of their systems, said :"Most organisations are lose huge sums of money and investment to cybercriminals, and are not even aware of it till the deed is done." According to him, as the nation moves further into an electronic based system, there's need for institutions and corporate bodies to put in place firm security measures aimed at preventing cybercriminals from encroaching into their systems.

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