Kenyan firms, especially those in the financial sector have to step up their investments and efforts in order to curb the rising Cyberattacks which has been ranked the third-largest threat to global stability by the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2018.
A report by the Communications Authority of Kenya revealed that Kenyan organisations were hit by about 11.2 million cyber threats in the first three months of 2019, a 10.1 percent increase as compared to the same period last year.
The data further reveals that its response center detected a rising number of malware, web applications attacks, system misconfiguration, and online abuse.
A similar report covering the period of October and December 2018 showed that cyber-security threats had increased by 167% to 10.2 million from 3.8 million threats detected, in the previous quarter.
As part of efforts to help affected organization, the regulatory body sent 14,078 cyber threat advisories to the firms, an increase from the 12,138 alerts during the previous period.
Most of these attacks have become smoother for the cybercriminals due to the increased adoption of new technology which has exposed firms to loss of customers’ deposit and savings to online fraudsters.
In its annual report published in 2019, Central Bank of Kenya said that the risks targeting the financial sector are expected to increase in sophistication and frequency.
“Cybercriminals are also getting more aggressive. In the financial sector, it poses a serious challenge since banks are reservoirs of confidential customer information. It takes various forms including high-tech crimes, data breaches, and phishing websites,” KCB said in a separate report.
Cybersecurity threats are estimated to have cost Kenya’s economy about Sh29.5 billion. According to the Microsoft Security Intelligence Report 2018, Kenya has 1,700 skilled cyber-security professionals, with 60 percent of companies facing a shortage highlighting the need for more education, exposure, and adoption.