Government has said that it would incorporate cybersecurity education into the basic and senior secondary schools in Ghana as part of an agenda to build capacity of citizenry in tackling cybersecurity. President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo said this in a speech read on his behalf by Mr Ambrose Dery, the Minister of the Interior, at the opening of the National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2019.
The President said, including cybersecurity education in the curriculum of basic and senior secondary education would help in building the capacity of citizens from an early stage and take the efforts made during the awareness month a step further. The National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2019 is being celebrated on the theme: “Demonstrating Ghana’s Cybersecurity Readiness” and spans from October 21 to 30 in Accra.
He said Ghana would continue to look up to other countries which had made great strides in cybersecurity to ensure regional and international collaboration in her journey towards achieving cybersecurity maturity, as part of the country’s digital strategy.
President Akufo-Addo said his government had undertaken a number of initiative that serve as testament to the fact that Ghana had made notable progress and development in the area of cybersecurity and that “We do not plan to rest in a state of complacency, but rather vow to do more”.
He said the Country had ratified the African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection also known as the “Malabo Convention”, and the Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime, popularly referred to as the “Budapest Convention”. He said “these conventions would enhance our cooperation with other countries at the policy, technical and operational levels in dealing with cybercrime.”
The President said to secure the country’s digital journey, the government had tasked the National Cyber Security Centre, through the Ministry of Communications, to ensure the security of Ghana’s digital space.
“I am reliably informed that, Ghana’s National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy (NCPS) have been reviewed to reflect current cybersecurity developments and are consistent with international best practices,” he said.
Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, the Minister of Communications, said the country was no exception to cyberattacks, especially as government was poised at improving the digital space, adding that, everyone who used any electronic device was a potential victim of cyber attack. She said digitalization held many opportunities for the nation, especially in the areas of job creation, hence the need for every government agency and the private sector to support the agenda of building a strong digital economy.
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Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said as the country hosts the secretariat of the African Continental Free Area (AfCFTA) Agreement, there were numerous opportunities that would be presented to businesses and individual citizens.
She, however, said hosting the AfCFTA Secretariat was a wake-up call for all and sundry to support the agenda of securing the digital space to protect everyone from cyber attacks. The Minister said by 2020, all government payments systems would be done electronically and that also called for securing the cyberspace.