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Curbing N127bn Cybersecurity Annual Losses via Tardigrade’s ERA Roadmap

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With cyber attacks on the rise, organisations across the globe are contending with loss of reputation, loss of customers, potential financial liabilities, regulatory notification requirements and sometimes, litigation. To address this menace, however, Tardigrade, a Nollysoft’s Enterprise Risk Assessment (ERA) solution, has been identified by experts as a veritable roadmap that would provide the better understanding of the cybersecurity space and a good grasp of the internal control mechanisms to organisations towards cyber threats.

The greatest war that countries in the 21st Century currently face and which they must prepare to win headlong to actively participate in the global economy largely driven by the Internet is cyber warfare.

As such, the need for organisations to deploy a security solution that helps to identify factors contributing to and determining the organisation’s overall cyber risk; assess the organisation’s cybersecurity preparedness; evaluate whether the organisation’s cybersecurity preparedness is aligned with its risks; determine risk management practices and controls that are needed or need enhancement and actions to be taken to achieve the desired state and offers informed risk management strategies to organisations cannot be under-estimated.

Indeed, local and regional authorities, professional IT associations and various reports home and abroad have raised the sentiments around the danger posed by cyber threats and the need for each organisation to get its IT infrastructure weaponised through effective internal controls and security solutions.

Rising wave of concerns

For instance, the telecoms industry regulator in Nigeria, the Nigerian Communications Commission, has noted that cybersecurity has become an essential component of the human activity. This was the position of the Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta, at a cybersecurity forum in Lagos,where he noted that cyber attacks’ high level of complexity requires action at different levels (both virtual and physical) and by different actors, including governments, private sector, civil society, intergovernmental organisations, among others.

According to him, the current scale and growth of ICT applications transcend all spheres of social and economic boundaries worldwide. “Whether it is broadcasting (digital TV) or social networking, e-Commerce (mobile banking and financial services), e-Governance (government services management, e-education, e-health, e-taxation, e-commerce), governments, institutions and the society, in general, are increasingly embracing these technologies and at the same time becoming exposed to vulnerabilities of cyber-attacks,” he said.

He, therefore, strongly advocated that technical measures such as theNollysoft’s Enterprise Risk Assessment (ERA) solution and appropriate legal instruments must be put in place to enhance the resilience of cybersecurity infrastructure and safeguard cyber technologies users.

In the same vein, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO), Mr. Shola Taylor, has also raised serious concerns about the dangers of cyber attacks and the need for a synergy by stakeholders to mitigate and, if possible, prevent their potential risks on organisations IT infrastructure.

According to Taylor, “Cyberspace contributes significantly to achieving countries’ national development goals, and so international organisations, national security services, operators, intelligence and data protection agencies, as well as citizens all, have a role to play in making cyberspace safer and more resilient,” he said, while sharing the CTO’s experience in developing national cybersecurity strategies for Commonwealth member countries as well as other countries, including Senegal last year.

Potential risks, exposures and losses

In Nigeria, over N127 billion is lost annually by mostly business organisations and ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of government, translating to 0.08 percent loss in the `country’s annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to the country’s Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu.

Also,62 percent of firms are being attacked weekly, according to a 2017International Data Corporation (IDC) InfoBriefsponsored by Splunk. In the report, it was noted that with malware becoming more advanced with encrypted ransomware, the security breach impacts on organisations may include loss of reputation, loss of customers, potential financial liabilities, regulatory notification requirements and sometimes litigation instigated by victim customers.

President, Cyber Secure Conference organised by the Cyber Security Experts Association of Nigeria (CSEAN), Mr. RemiAfon quoted another statistics, which puts the cost of cyber-crime globally at $700 billion per year.He said the loss is projected to rise to about $2 trillion by 2019, due to the rapid digitisation of consumer lives and company records. Breaches like these have steadily been on the rise as according to reports, the number of incidents has increased by more 38 percent annually since 2015.

According to U.S. State of Cybercrime survey, Ponemon Institute, and Juniper research, cybersecurity events and costs are increasing, data breaches are expected to reach $2.1 trillion globally by 2019.

Thus, Afon argues that there is a need for Nigeria to implement the National Cyber Security Strategy and Policy and ensure effective implementation of the Cybercrime Act 2015 as well making organisations embrace newest solution. One of such security solutions ready to tackle cyber attacks on organisations in the country is Tardigrade, a Nollysoft’s Enterprise Risk Assessment (ERA) solution.

This is instructive as industry experts have said organisations in Nigeria are in dire need of cyber experts that could help secure the cyberspace and one of the ways to boost protection is to embrace and deploy innovative solutions offered by security company/experts.

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Nigeria’s Online Travel Booking Space in Search of Real Value

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Although boasting a lot of potential, Nigeria’s travel and tourism industry has remained in a state of near-misses and failed projections occasioned by the glaring gap and huge vacuum in the online travel booking space.

 

According to available statistics, the direct contribution of Travel and Tourism to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was N2,29bn, approximately 1.9% of total GDP in 2017 –  a figure that is expected to rise by 2.9% in 2018 and 4.3% per annum from 2018-2028, to N3,605.7bn, effectively representing 1.9% of total GDP in 2028.

 

On the other hand, the total contribution of Travel and Tourism to GDP was N6,205.8bn representing 5.1% of GDP in 2017 and is forecast to rise by 1.6% in 2018 and 4.8% per annum to N10,094.5bn from 2018-2018, representing 5.4% of GDP in 2028.

 

While the figures appear promising, it is worth considering where the Nigerian travel industry stands in the global scheme of things.

 

Ranked on a global list of 185 countries, Nigeria presently stands at positions 48 in total contribution and 163 in relative contribution respectively to GDP from the Travel and Tourism sector. In terms of expected real growth in the sector, Nigeria stands at a poorly 168 position and 59 in long-term growth forecast (2018-2028) in the sector.

 

Compared with global indices, Travel and Tourism represents 10.4% of global GDP while one-tenth of jobs worldwide are supported by the industry, representing 9.9% of global employment. Furthermore, one-fifth of all of all global net jobs created in the last decade have been within the Travel and Tourism sector.

 

It is an open secret that travel and tourism is an important global economic activity, with the potential to contribute significantly to a nation’s GDP.

 

Added to this is the immense employment-generation opportunity it holds when harnessed efficiently – a point aptly embellished by Gloria Guevara Manzo, President & CEO of the World Travel & Tourism Council when she enthused that “inclusive growth and ensuring a future with quality jobs are the concerns of governments everywhere. Travel & Tourism, which already supports one in every ten jobs on the planet, is a dynamic engine of employment opportunity.”

 

Here in Nigeria, the engine of economic prosperity inherent in the Travel and Tourism is yet to be unleashed, owing predominantly to the vacuum in the online travel booking space which holds the key to transforming the sector.4

 

In real terms, only a small proportion (about 13%) of Nigerian air travelers currently book travel products online – a damning statistic for a country boasting a population grossing over 190 million.

 

For the four components of the Travel and Tourism sector which include Leisure travel (inbound and domestic), Business travel, Domestic travel and Foreign travel, the outlook remains the same: total contribution of the sector to GDP is nearly three times greater than its direct contribution.

 

Aligned to this is the poor experience of most Nigerians, many of whom have expressed their dissatisfaction with the level of service in the online travel booking space, despite the existence of a glut of players. For many corporate travelers, a segment that represents the overwhelming majority of online travel service consumers, the prevailing opinion is a glaring lack of real value. Same sentiment dominates among leisure travelers – many of whom are frustrated by sub-standard service and the limited choices of packages/offers available among current players – two of the most recurring pain-points that have drained confidence among customers in the sector.

 

Considering the nexus between technology and value-offerings in the online travel booking space, there is a growing need for a strong player backed by cutting-edge technology to fill the vacuum in the sector and take the industry to the next level. Further justifying this need is the undoubted influence of a world-class online platform and innovation in service delivery which has transformed the entire value chain of an allied sector such as e-Commerce in Nigeria, as seen in the rise and dominance of strong local players such as Konga which has re-defined the scope of offerings and customer experience in the industry.

 

The global travel and tourism industry is a multi-billion-dollar establishment which relies heavily on innovative technology and world-class customer experience in delivering a wide range of value offerings to all classes of travelers.

 

Nigeria is due for this disruption which has the potential of growing the sector’s contribution to GDP. Digital innovation is the way forward.

 

 

 

 

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TechX Innovation Hub Unveils Office in Enugu

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Technology Extra, TechX, Innovation Hub, a global organization that is concerned with the slow adoption of technology in the developing countries especially Africa has opened office in Enugu, South Eastern part of Nigeria.

Tech X is focused on four key areas of technological advancement; Awareness, Access, Adoption and Application.

Speaking at the unveiling of the office, Tony Ojobo, founder, TechX Innovation Hub, said that a key strategy that addresses the issue of low ICT penetration is awareness.

“People need to be aware of the power of ICT to transform lives, businesses and the economy at large. The most capitalized firms in the world today are playing in the ICT space. The capacity of technology to lift peoples and nations out of poverty is phenomenal.

In recognition of these tested facts, we decided to start from the area where penetration is low and scale up to other regions in the country.

“Nigeria however, has the market, the people and local innovations that can disrupt business models around the world. We are on track to making this happen,” he stated.

According to him, “TechX shall create a platform for people with ideas to incubate, startups, business developers, coders, programmers and techies to perfect and scale up their innovations through a structured mentoring process, training and knowledge development programs.

“Our focus will encompass the following; Coding, Gaming, Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT’s) Robotics, Digital Innovations, Business Development, ICT Training, Software Development, Cyber Security, Digital Marketing etc.

“Our teeming youths can focus their creative energies more positively with a platform such as TechX Innovation Hub to give them a head-start in live. ICT has become the new oil and countries that have depended on oil as the economic main stay are beginning to embrace technology.”

“We have examples from UAE, Qatar and other countries in the Gulf region. The federal government has been making efforts towards diversification of the economy; however more still needs to be done through the encouragement of innovations, startups and SMEs.

“In realization of this need, TechX was set up to play our part towards the economic development of our people and thus contribute to poverty reduction in the region in particular and the country at large,” he said.

Ojobo noted that TechX will be collaborating with relevant Stakeholders, such as; the Media, Regulators, Hub owners, Tertiary Institutions, State Governments, Federal Government, SME’s, Multilateral Agencies, Embassies, Equipment Manufacturers, Ministries Departments and Agencies.

 

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NSE Trading Platform Suffers 4 Hours Technical Glitch

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Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Monday encountered a technical glitch which impacted trading activities for about four hours.

 

Mr. Bola Adeeko, head of Shared Services Division, NSE, said the glitch was resolved and market transactions continued at 1:45pm.

 

Due to the lost trading time, Mr. Adeeko explained that a decision was taken to extend the trading hours on Monday to 3:30p.m, from the usual time of 2:30p.m.

 

He further confirmed that the root cause of the disruption has been fully rectified.

 

According to Mr. Adeeko, NSE has a robust business continuity framework in place with processes designed to forestall and reduce the impact of such unpredictable technical glitches when they occur.

 

“The Bourse has a solid track record of high availability and systems resilience, whilst working with some of the cutting edge technologies required to power up a modern Exchange and will continue to work to enhance this”.

 

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