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CAPDAN Raises Alarm, Says Computer Village Under Police Siege

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Mr Ahmed Ojikutu, president of Computer and Allied Product Dealers Association of Nigeria (CAPDAN)

Computer and Allied Product Dealers at Computer Village (CAPDAN), Ikeja, have sent ‘Save Our Soul’ (SOS) message to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) over extortion and abuse of operational guideline by his men dispatched to secure or monitor the market environment.

Mr Ahmed Ojikutu, president of Computer and Allied Product Dealers Association of Nigeria (CAPDAN) in a telephone interview with Nigeria CommunicationsWeek alleged that the officer attached to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) are making lives miserable for their members, calling on the IG for a wide-range investigation.

According to Mr. Ojikutu, SARS officer make over N7million weekly from the market following indiscriminate arrests and harassment of traders and other technicians predominately young people.  

He said that several frantic efforts to attract higher police authority’s attentions to the cases yielded no meaningful results. 

In Mr. Ojikutu’s words, “The officers and men of the Force have turned Computer Village to an ATM which will not accept any longer. With racking technology, it is easier to dictate who stole a phone. Meanwhile, the buyer of such phone is traced to Computer Village, men of the Force would arrest anybody that, out of omission or Commission, touched the phone. Computer Village is made up of young people who are daily struggling to make a living.

“So, when a customer comes to shop one and the device they need is not there, the shop owner wouldn’t just allow the customer to leave. He will approach owners of shop two or any other who has such device and sell. We are not denying the fact that in a market of such magnitude there must be bag eggs.

“But, even among the Police officers there are bad eggs. So, what the Nigerian Police officers do is that when a phone is lost and tracked to Computer village, they would arrest about ten people who might have touched the phone in one way of the other; and they are bailed with up to N250,000.00.

“I have met with the Commissioner of Police in Lagos, the two Area Commanders, reported to the constituted authorities, but the officers in the field are not willing to change.

I think there will be imminent protect that will shake the town. We are awaiting to exhaust the last line to be aware of what is happening.

Have You Addressed Members to Shun Stolen Items?
“We have spoken to them, but the truth is that technology has advanced. People will still sell their used phones or swap it, so, the issue around genuineness of a phone will still be there. Therefore, if there was an armed robbery or kidnapping case, technology has so advanced that it will be easy to dictate who first handled the phone, the location and time. Let the police arrest the culprit and not rope in others just to enlarge their pockets.

“On our side we are working against illicit practices and have set code of conducts for our members. The Police should do their work with all sense of diligence and professionalism not the current self-serving and extortions in the name of arrests. It leads to a lot of frame ups. They do this daily. At this end, we are saying no it. In fact, we don’t know if they have collaborators who are more interested in seeing these suffering young people undergo series of harassments in the hands of the Police.

“Computer Village is made up of mostly young people; and where young people are, they are bound to commit crime, but that shouldn’t give anyone the impetus to one to abuse those genuinely going about their businesses.

“It is a burning issue, and technology has come to stay. So, let them arrest the criminals and prosecute them. Under one week we countered cases where the Police collected over seven million naira (N7million). Though, we have reported to the authorities it has continued. When you push people to the wall, when they turn against you it will be fierce and brutal.

“The Inspector General (IG) of Police is a good man, the Commission of Police in Lagos, a good officer, the Area Commander in Ikeja is doing fantastic job, therefore, we don’t know who are giving the corrupt and bad eggs in the Police force the audacity to traumatize us in our business area. Who are these bad eggs? If people want to revolute they will not consider those who are good, the general aphorism would be ‘Nigerian Police is Bad’”.

Fighting Crime, Substandard Devices and Perpetuators
He expressed CAPDAN’s readiness to work with relevant government bodies in the fight against crime, and riding the market of substandard products.

The CAPDAN president told Nigeria CommunicationsWeek whereas they are ready to collaborate, no cartel or interest can be above the government.

“So, if there were cartels cloning others’ phones, it wouldn’t be like they can’t be stopped, but without direct involvement of constituted authorities like the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to clamp down, it is not going to be very easy. Therefore, we need their direct collaboration to rid the country of these substandard or cloned phones which constitute problems to the innocent citizens. We are open to partnerships, needing the backing of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), etc., but the bureaucratic settings usually cause challenge to get effective collaboration. If you want to clamp down, we are ready to volunteer information that will assist you. When the cartel know it is not profitable any more to import substandard products, they will naturally leave the market and the public will be the direct beneficiaries.  

Advice to End Users
“We are coming up with a product called ‘Phone-Range; an online platform to assist buyers check the genuinely or otherwise of any device they want to buy at the Computer Village. We will notify the public about the solution when it is unveiled”.

However, efforts to get reactions from the Police Public Relations Officer for Lagos State proved abortive.

 

 

 
 

 

 

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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Visa Launches ID Intelligence for Smarter Customer Authentication

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Visa has launched Visa ID Intelligence, a platform that lets issuers, acquirers and merchants quickly adopt emerging authentication technologies, according to a press release.

Available through Visa Developer Platform, Visa ID Intelligence offers a curated selection of third-party authentication technologies that feature simple integration with Visa APIs and SDKs. This allows clients to create, test and adopt new authentication solutions.

This ultimately helps financial institutions and merchants to adopt effective and secure solutions and accelerate time-to-market with streamlined on boarding and implementation through Visa as a single trusted source, the company said.

Visa ID Intelligence features include: Identity Documents— the platform evaluates identification documents and matches selfies to photo IDs, while extracting document information and converting it into digital form.

Uses include creating new accounts, and performing password reset and lost or stolen card replacement.

-Biometrics — Visa ID Intelligence allows clients to use eye, face, fingerprint and voice to meet consumer needs for convenience, security and speed in authentication.

Uses include app login, payments, step-up authentication, and more.

“Traditional methods for authenticating a customer can create frustration or are simply not designed for the new ways people are shopping and paying. We built Visa ID Intelligence to help accelerate smarter and easy-to-use authentication solutions for any commerce environment — to better protect against fraud and to move closer to a world without passwords,” Mark Nelson, Visa senior vice president of risk and authentication products, said in the release.

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ESET Works With Google To Protect Chrome Against Dangerous Malware

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By peter oluka

ESET, a leading global cybersecurity company, on Thursday launches Chrome Cleanup, a new scanner and cleaner for Google Chrome designed to help users browse the web safely and without interruption.

Chrome Cleanup will be available for all Google Chrome users running on Windows.

As cyber-attacks become more complex and difficult to spot, browsing the web can lead users to dangerous sites which can install malicious software onto devices.

Chrome Cleanup will alert Google Chrome users to potential threats when it detects unwanted software.

Google Chrome will then give users the option to remove the software. Chrome Cleanup operates in the background, without visibility or interruptions to the user. It deletes the software and notifies the user once the cleanup has been successfully completed.

“Using the internet should always be a smooth and safe experience for everyone,” said Juraj Malcho, chief technology officer at ESET. “For three decades, ESET has developed a number of security solutions that allow users to safely enjoy their technology and to mitigate a variety of cyber threats. Chrome Cleanup addresses unwanted software that can negatively influence a users’ experience on the internet.”

Chrome Cleanup is included in the latest version of Google Chrome. For more information about these tools, read Google’s blog post, here.

For 30 years, ESET® has been developing industry-leading IT security software and services for businesses and consumers worldwide.

With solutions ranging from endpoint and mobile security, to encryption and two-factor authentication, ESET’s high-performing, easy-to-use products give consumers and businesses the peace of mind to enjoy the full potential of their technology.

ESET unobtrusively protects and monitors 24/7, updating defenses in real-time to keep users safe and businesses running without interruption. Evolving threats require an evolving IT security company.

Backed by R&D centers worldwide, ESET becomes the first IT security company to earn 100 Virus Bulletin VB100awards, identifying every single “in-the-wild” malware without interruption since 2003.

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A Buyer’s Market in the Global Economics of DDoS Attacks

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It’s a buyer’s market in the local property arena at the moment, according to certain industry experts.

 

This is largely as a result of the slower economy, which has seen a rise in the number of properties for sale.

 

But did you know that globally, it’s a buyer’s market as well when we look at the economics of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks? The second, of course, is an underground market, largely regarded as a criminal one.

 

So said Bryan Hamman, Arbor Network’s territory manager for Sub-Saharan Africa.

 

Referring to recently released information from Arbor Networks, he said, “It is interesting to analyse the current economics in global DDoS attacks, which are attempts to make an online service unavailable by overwhelming it with traffic from multiple sources. Most people who are aware of DDoS attacks understand that there will be a perpetrator and a target.

 

“However, we’re now seeing a growing number of third-party providers of DDoS attacks as a service, who advertise their abilities online in order to either sell would-be attackers access to the tools needed to conduct a DDoS attack, or who perform the attack themselves on the customer’s behalf and provide reports afterwards.”

 

Hamman noted  that the fees of these underworld providers are lessening, due to rapidly expanding competition and the supply of readily available attack resources such as botnets. As a result, he says, the DDoS business is currently a buyer’s market.

 

Arbor reported that the prices for attack services, sometimes called “stressers” or “booters” vary widely, as do estimates of the total cost of an attack to the victim. But the economics are simple: DDoS attacks are becoming cheaper than ever for the perpetrator; are extremely lucrative for the attack service provider, and potentially financially devastating for the target.

 

Arbor noted that an increasing number of operators resemble legitimate service provider infrastructures with significant computing power, typically running their own botnet armies to unleash DDoS attacks. Perpetrators can essentially rent the providers’ botnets by the hour, day or week, or in some cases can buy a specific number of bots outright. The mechanics of transactions follow a classic web service model, meaning the perpetrator and the provider need never come in contact.

 

Providers that conduct attacks-as-a-service even post their services online, with tiered pricing reflecting the different types of attack that they offer. Prices are based on several factors. They can include the duration of the attack, the perceived value of the target, the country in which the attack takes place and/or the different methodologies employed.

 

In Arbor Networks 12th annual Worldwide Infrastructure Security Report, 59 percent of respondents estimated their downtime costs as being more than USD500/ minute in lost revenue (some ZAR6,700 per minute with the rand/dollar exchange rate on around ZAR13.50 to the dollar), with some indicating even higher losses. This also does not factor in the costs of repairing the damage, potential legal costs of settling with customers denied service, or reputational damage to the company’s brand.

 

Hamman concluded, “Here in South Africa, we may not yet face the overtness of DDoS operators advertising their services, as can be seen in the US. However, this does not mean that local companies shouldn’t be vigilant against DDoS attacks – protection is more vital than ever. A hybrid solution that combines on-premises and cloud-based protection is the industry best practice in DDoS defence. When you accept that DDoS attacks aren’t going away, and in fact are projected to escalate, it makes the best economic sense of all to make sure that you are adequately prepared against a DDoS attack.”

 

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