Africa lost an estimated $3.5 billion to cyber security attacks over the past few years, Henry Kerali, World Bank Country Director in Ghana, has said, noting that countries within the continent were yet to develop a robust digital economy.
He said while countries were focused on building their digital economies, cyber attackers continue to enhance their skills to match these digital advancements and thereby take advantage of the opportunities provided by the Internet and other disruptive technologies.
“Within a short period of time, cyber attackers have advanced to a sophisticated level, whilst most countries still have only rudimentary protection levels,” Mr. Kerali said at the climax of the National Cyber security Awareness Month (NCSAM) in Accra.
The event, which was formally opened by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, was held under the theme: “A Safer Digital Ghana.”
Kerali said the past decade has been characterised by digital transformations across the globe as governments seek to develop the digital economy.
Transition from traditional to digital economies remains particularly critical for developing economies as it enables faster growth, offers innovative products and services, creates jobs and boosts economic competitiveness, thereby reducing poverty and boosting prosperity,” he said.
“Despite its infancy, the positive impact of disruptive technologies in accelerating economic growth has been acknowledged, but this has been undermined by the increase of cyber threats and risks at national and global levels,” he added.
Mr. Kerali said these risks had always been present and cyber security experts had warned about these risks for several years.