Cybercrime increasing across Africa’s financial Sector due to digital explosion


Rohit Kumar from I&M presenting on enterprise security and cyber defense at #CIO1002015

In the current age of digitization organizations are heavily dependant on cyber technology with geographic boundaries being collapsed.

In this digital era organizations are facing threats from the virtual world wherein crimes are perpetrated by cyber criminals who are leveraging on evolved eco system like the Dark Net.

Through the entrant of companies like Seacom, EASSy and TEAMs in the African market there has been advent of high internet speeds , internet and mobile access penetration across the region have also gone up and automation of Government and corporate processes have gone up posing more risks especially to the financial sector.

“We live in an increasingly networked world from personal banking to Government infrastructure. With this in mind more and newer risks have come up and protecting the networks we use is no longer optional,” said Rohit Gupta, CIO I&M Bank during the CIO 100 Symposium in Naivasha that saw over 100 IT experts attend.

In Africa alone, statistics as at January 2015 show that out of 1.1 billion Africans, 298 million people are active internet users, another 103 million have active social media accounts, 900 million have mobile connections and another 85 million have active mobile social accounts.

With such statistics we realize that there is great data explosion and with it comes with risks like cyber attacks and crimes, a battle that most companies are fighting with.

Cybercrime is quite high in the financial sector. In fact in first six months of 2014, Kenya’s Commercial bank lost $9.4 million to fraud.Over the last few years the global cybercrime landscape has changed dramatically with criminals employing more sophisticated technology and greater knowledge of cyber security .

With the rise of cybercrime businesses are increasingly facing impacts not only on the financial from but also irreversible damage to their brands and market reputation. As a result of this there is a significant need for corporate to recognize cyber threats and craft cyber response plans.

in the financial sector the value to the attacker would be internet banking and brokerage too. The value to the attacker would be internet banking and brokerage . Phishing attacks of online banking accounts or cloning of ATM cards are common occurances.

The increasing use of mobiles for online banking and financial transactions has also increased vulnerabilities to a great extent, according to Gupta who also observed that the root course of most attacks in the cyber attacks today could be monetary gain and attacks that have gradually evolved into cybercrime syndicates siphoning off money through illegal cyber channels.

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