By: Yvonne Atilego
The Cyber Security Authority (CSA), the agency whose mandate is to regulate cybersecurity in the country has called on Ghanaians to be cybersecurity conscious amid recent global cyber incidents that have negatively affected individuals, businesses, and other critical information infrastructure.
Speaking at the media lunch of the National Cyber Security (NCS) Awareness Month in Accra on Wednesday, September 14, 2022, the Acting Director General of the Authority, Dr. Albert Antwi-Boasiako said with the advancement in modern technology and the wide use of the internet, cybercriminals have leveraged the benefits of the internet to carry out their activities more covertly, thereby causing harm to individuals and businesses in the cruelest manner.
“While digitalization is bringing remarkable economic and societal benefits to majority of the global population, it is worth noting that these technologies, irrespective of the opportunities they create, have inherent risks such that when taken advantage of by cybercriminals, could have detrimental effects on individuals, enterprises, societies, and nations at large.
“Studies have shown that, an increasing reliance on the Internet has created more risks and vulnerabilities and opened up new possibilities for criminal activity. The Global Risks Reports 2022 indicates that cybersecurity threats are growing; malware and ransomware attacks increased by 358% and 435% respectively in 2020.
The report also ranked cyber-attacks as the seventh most likely and eighth most impactful risk facing businesses globally,” Dr. Antwi-Boasiako said.
He said the rise in cybercrimes globally has led the Authority to intensify public awareness and enhance public-private sector understanding of cybersecurity regulations hence, the reason behind its National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM).
The NCSAM, institutionalized since October 2018 is the leading event within the cybersecurity space that seeks to educate children, the public, businesses, and government stakeholders on cyber hygiene best practices.
This year’s celebration which will also take place in October is under the theme; “Regulating Cybersecurity: A Public-Private Sector Collaborative Approach”. The event will help build synergies among all relevant stakeholders to ensure compliance with cybersecurity regulations.
On her part, Deputy Minister for Communications and Digitalization, Ama Pomaa Boateng said though government has put in place appropriate measures for the attainment of a reliable and robust digital economy, the digital space is still prone to varying cyberattacks which must be a concern for all.
She said fighting cybercrime is a collective responsibility and that is why government is leading an all hands-on-deck approach to combating the menace.
Touching on the need for the public and private sector to collaborate on the fight, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber Telecommunications, Dr. Ing. Kenneth Ashigbey urged all stakeholders to participate fully in the month-long event.
He said for the awareness programme to achieve its desired outcome, the public and private sector, faith-based organizations, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and the media should come on board and educate its members on cybersecurity.