News Column

ISSAN Decries Absence of Law to Curb Cybercrime

July 25, 2014

Adeyemi Adepetun

AMIDST reports that the banking industry incurred a huge loss of about N159 billion through cyber crime between 2000 and 2013, the Information Security Society of Africa, Nigeria (ISSAN) and major stakeholders in the banking industry have decried the absence of an appropriate law to deal with e-fraud offenders in the country.

In a communiquÉ issued at the end of a roundtable organised by the society in collaboration with an IT firm, Digital Encode Limited for Chief Internal Auditors and Chief Information Officers of bank, participants identified the inability of the National Assembly to pass the Nigeria Cybercrime Act into law as a major drawback in curtailing cybercrime in the country.

Meanwhile, ISSAN used to occassion to announce the establishment of a committee to act as the industry's pressure group to liaise with the National Assembly towards a speedy passage of the cybercrime law.

According to ISSAN, members of the committee include the Managing Directors of Interswitch, and NIBSS,

It also included the representatives from the Bankers Committee; the National Security Adviser and the CBN. Other members include the president, ISSAN and the Chairman, Committee of Chief Internal Auditors of Banks in Nigeria (CCIABN)

Noting the increasing rate of incessant attacks by cybercriminals on banks, ISSAN urged the Committee of Internal Auditors of Banks to liaise with the Committee of E-Banking Industry Heads (CeBIH) and engage Mastercard & Visa card on EMV cards frauds in the country.

The Roundtable, which had in attendance key industry players from Interswitch, NIBBS, the CBN, and a wide variety of Information Technology professionals including the Chief Internal Auditors and Chief Information Officers of several Nigerian Banks also discussed the incessant attacks by cybercriminals on banks, action plan for the protection of payment systems and the banking industry as a whole, the Central Bank's biometric project and its impact on banks and consumers alike, from a security perspective.

In his welcome address, the ISSAN President, David Isiavwe described the roundtable as a critical milestone "in the gamut of activities and efforts towards achieving total security of the banking environment in Nigeria."

He observed that the proliferation of e-channels which has brought banking services closer to customers has further increased the risk of cyber crime hence, companies must find a more comprehensive approach to protecting their employees, core networks and IT infrastructure.

"Without any doubt, companies' assets are now increasingly becoming information-based and intangible. Indeed, most physical assets now rely heavily on information as technology now allows companies to offer more information /digital products than ever before. As these products become increasingly intangible, there is a greater need to ensure that they are safe for use by customers and staff alike as well as the general banking public.

"The cyber threat landscape is constantly evolving and we expect new forms of threats and attacks (including zero day attacks) to emerge with each passing day. We therefore need to be proactive rather than reactive. We need to carefully x-ray our processes and operations to see what we are not doing right; what areas need to be further inoculated and what urgent practical steps we can take to ensure that our IT infrastructure is secure and can support the business objectives and strategies of our respective organizations," Isiavwe stressed.

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Source: AllAfrica

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