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Author Topic: Nigeria loses 127 billion yearly to Cybercrime' - says communication Minister  (Read 416 times)

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The Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu said Tuesday that Nigeria is losing about 127 billion naira annually to cybercrime and urged stakeholders in the Information and Communication Technology, ICT, industry to rise up to the challenge.

He also the Ministry in collaboration with the military is poised to use modern technology to fight insurgency, corruption and other crimes that pose a threat to Nigeria’s unity.

He spoke while declaring open the 26th edition of the National Conference of the Computer Society of Nigeria holding at NAF Centre, Abuja.

He told the gathering that all hands must be on the deck to face the challenges confronting the nation with the deployment of ICT, stressing that the theme of this year’s conference was more apt as “no nation can develop without safety and security.”

He said: “national safety and security further encompasses securing the nation’s cyber space. Our growing dependence on digital infrastructure introduces and poses grave threats to national security. It is quite shocking that Nigeria loses about N127 billion which is 0.08 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP), yearly to cybercrime”.

He said further “Without safety and security, growth is impossible. “Information Technology for National Safety and Security”, the Conference theme, is highly relevant as it aligns with the National safety and security priority of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“Securing lives and properties is both an enabler and an imperative for growth and development. Threats emanate from local and global terrorism which strikes fear and shatters the much needed national peace and security.

“Nobody, no organization can perform optimally under a cloud of fear. Uncertainties and raised anxieties strain our economy and society. We must however acknowledge successes recorded so far in the fight to keep Nigeria secure.

“It is appropriate that the efforts of the armed forces and the significant achievements in the fight against Boko Haram are recognized. Though the Nigerian Army is already using some technology platforms, there may be some requiring close attention by the conference. The Ministry is also engaging with the Nigerian Army on possible technology collaboration to tackle the activities of insurgents and other security challenges in the country.

“Beyond military might, financial crimes and corruption are added burden to the national security challenges that threaten the very existence and development of the nation. In Public finance, the electronic platforms used by the Nigerian government such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA), the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) and the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) have resulted in significant savings and elimination of waste in governance.

“Though great strides have been made in these areas, there is still a lot to do to secure our dear nation. We all know that ICT is the globally recognized enabler in all spheres of development and it is most appropriate for NCS to step in by offering the nation an authentic platform to explore the role of ICT in national safety and security. Using ICT and Geographical Information System (GIS) to tackle Boko Haram, Niger Delta militancy and other security challenges with enhanced efficiency and professionalism has become a matter of paramount importance. ”

“As at today, ICT is currently contributing up to 10 percent of Nigeria’s GDP and had created over 10 million jobs in the past 10 years. Developments in the ICT sector have provided well over $32 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) over the last 15 years. It is indeed one of the fastest growing sectors of the Nigerian economy which is the second largest ICT market in Africa. The number of Internet subscribers in Nigeria also rose from less than one million in 2003 to over 80 million in November 2015,” the Minister added.

In his remarks, the President of the Nigeria Computer Society, Prof. Sola Aderounmu noted that more pro-active steps are needed to drive the ICT industry in the country considering the enormous challenge facing the nation.

He said the theme of this year’s conference, Information Technology for National Safety and Security, was carefully chosen to enable stakeholders brainstorm on issues that would bring about speedy growth and development of the ICT industry.

Prof Aderounmu commended all the past presidents of the association for their contributions to the development of the country and the organization, adding that a number of activities have been lined up during the conference to honour them.


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