Cisco: Nigeria Lags Behind in Trained Cybersecurity Personnel


Emma Okonji

It has been revealed that Nigeria is lagging behind in the area of trained personnel in cybersecurity matters, a situation that could escalate the effect of malicious cyberattacks on organisations, which include key government agencies.

The Country General Manager at Cisco, an information technology (IT) security and networking company, Mr. Olakunle Oloruntimehin, disclosed this in Lagos during an interview with THISDAY Newspapers.

He decried the shortfall of trained cybersecurity personnel in Nigeria, and called for a concerted effort on the part of private organisations and government agencies to begin to look inward and invest in people, processes and technology, especially in people that will help mitigate cyberattacks, which he said, is on the increase.

According to him, cyberattacks are inevitable and could be launched at a time any organisation list expected it. Highlighting the economic effects of cyber attacks to include huge revenue loss that will result in colossal economic loss, emanating from downtime, Oloruntimehin said organisations must begin to train cybersecurity experts that will help detect and mitigate cyberattacks whenever they are launched at their targeted audience.

Cisco Systems Engineer, Security, for Nigeria and English West Africa, Tomi Amao, also advised organisations to go beyond training of cybersecurity personnel in order to further fortify their online systems and protect their data from malicious attacks.

According to him, organisations must invest more in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology and machine learning.
“We foresee more ransomware and phishing attacks on organisations in 2018, and we therefore expect more investments in cybersecurity solutions and innovations from organisations because of the expected increase in cyberattacks in 2018. Before there was nothing like cloud computing but today organisations are investing in could computing and we expect more of such investments in IT security solutions,” Amao said.

Aside all of these, there is need for organisations to embark on awareness creation and education of their entire staff members on cybersecurity.

“Again, we expect that organisations should have very robust cybersecurity policies. Many companies do not have policies around IT and Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Organisations should also revive their cybersecurity policies regularly. This is so because the technology landscape keeps changing as technology evolves and organisations must continue to move along with the changes.

“Organistions also need to backup their systems regularly. They also need to review their third party integration as the company grows bigger. Regular review of infrastructure is also very key to mitigate cyberattacks,” Amao said.