After series of deliberation and efforts, October has been adopted as the National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NASCAM).
Meanwhile, there have been several discussions on the subject especially amongst officials of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and the Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). Having understood that Nigeria is under increasing threat from cyber-attacks following the spread of digital platforms in the rapid integration of its social, political and economic facets into the digital economy.
With the proliferation of criminals and terrorists use Internet technology to wreak havoc in countries ill-prepared for the cyber-attacks because of the increasing adoption of digital platforms in national frontiers.
“There have been increasing deployment of e-government, e-commerce, e-health, cashless society, e-learning, digital entertainment, and e-agriculture among other electronic engagements in all spheres of life. And this has resulted in getting sensitive data stored online. The consequence of this development is that cyber-attacks have become more profound with unauthorized access to the data stored online. The increasing incidences of identity theft and e-fraud are consequences of the plurality of Internet technology across the social climes”, Olubayo Abiodun, Director of Communications, Centre for Cyber Awareness and Development (CECAD) said in a statement.
The statement reads that “to underscore the importance of the advocacy campaign to Nigeria’s national interests and its assets; the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) to President Muhammadu Buhari has been contacted on the initiative.
“The involvement of the NSA is pivotal to the advocacy campaign because of the rising tides of cyber-security challenges ravaging the entire socio-political, economic, military and technological ecosystem of the global community, Olubayo said.
Meanwhile, the week-long program will involve series of daily activities delineated to accommodate sectorial emphasizes on every facet of the lives of the nation and its people. The regular lineup of events will include awareness focus on government and its agencies, banks and financial institutions, Telcos and ICT, education, health, tourism, transport, and security communities.
He said that the initiative is a Public-Private Project because all government Ministries, Department, and Agencies, as well as the private sector, will be involved. Explaining that the security services, educational institutions, Nigerian Stock Exchange, Security, and Exchange Commission (SEC), hospitals, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NIMASA and other key government institutions susceptible to cyber-attacks will be involved in raising the bar for the awareness campaign.
Continuing, he explained that the week-long event would help raise the bar on the multi-stakeholders awareness across government, corporate institutions and private citizens through the principles of the Public Private Partnership (PPP).
The central theme would be on “how to enhance safer connections to the Internet without compromising corporate and individual safety”. However, on the last day of the event, there will be a stakeholders meeting to round off the weeklong activities with a Presidential declaration of the adoption of October as Nigeria’s celebration of cyber security awareness in line with global best practice.