Cyber security threats have gone up sharply since Covid-19 struck, leaving companies scratching their heads on how to tame the menace.

As part of the efforts to find solutions to the challenge, a security operations centre has been established in Nairobi to ward off the rising cases of cyber-attack threats on companies and institutions.  

The hub, known as TAI Security Operations Centre, will offer real-time monitoring and watertight analysis to detect, prevent and address security threats to Kenyan businesses.

The project is a partnership between Strathmore University’s @iLabAfrica, ACPM Ltd based in Hungary and BCK Kenya Ltd.

Experts at the launch noted that companies must find ingenious ways to address vulnerabilities of their systems and firm up their defense measures.

“If we want to make a difference in the cyber security world, we need to encourage young people to invest in academics as well as the business world,” said Dr. Joseph Sevilla, director of @iLabAfrica- Strathmore University.

Experts are calling on companies to devise measures to ensure that their networks are protected from cyber criminals as their employees work remotely. Hackers have sought to take advantage of system weaknesses which are prevalent when employees are working from as is the case currently.

 “I encourage businesses and corporations alike to develop and in-still their own measures in curbing cyber threats,” said Kenya ICT Cabinet secretary Joe Mucheru during the launch of the centre.

The launch of the cente comes at a time when more than 48.5 million cyber-attacks were detected in the six months to June 2020.

Frequent attacks in Kenya comprise phishing, malware, false publications, money transfer fraud, credit card fraud and cyber terrorism.

Mr Mucheru blames the increasing number of internet attacks to the global upsurge in malware and the high level of unemployment amongst highly skilled tech-savvy youth.

Firms lose billions of shillings and critical data cyber criminals every year.

Kenya lost about Sh18 billion to cybercrime in 2016, according to a research conducted by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) and the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).

The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) warned in 2017 that local lenders are exposed to cyberattacks and other forms of digital fraud.

The CBK noted that data on fraud reported to Banking Fraud and Investigation Department indicates cases relating to computer, mobile and Internet banking are rising.


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