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Kenya: US$171m lost to cybercrime in 2016

Kenya: US1m lost to cybercrime in 2016

In a report by Deloitte, companies and government organisations in Kenya lost US$171 million through cybercrime in 2016, and this is expected to rise by 30% by the end of this year.

The report Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions 2017 ranked Kenya as one of the most vulnerable countries in terms of cyber security.

There have been cases of insider threats where billions of shillings have disappeared through the IFMIS (Integrated Financial Management Information System), which was established to ensure efficiency in government procurement.

Riaan Badenhorst, Managing Director at Kaspersky Lab Africa says more awareness is required within organisations to better understand new threats and security practices related to digital assets.

"From my perspective, things like that [education] can be driven from (the) top down. That means even ministers working it government departments need to be aware of those risks. Without awareness we aren't going to come close to resolving any of these problems," he said.

"Once there is awareness at the top level, they need to partner with a trusted adviser who will quickly assess their security posture and see security gaps in the government department or the corporate organisation," Badenhorst added.

Organisations need to invest in securing the security gaps that have been identified - and this could include introducing internal systems to ensure accountability from every officer in the government, he continued.

If there is no buy-in from the top level then it becomes impossible to execute some of these recommended measures.

Badenhorst also said that there aren't enough trained cyber security experts on the continent and this can hamper the fight against cyber attacks.

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