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After launch of undersea cables, cybercrime threatens e-business

CARTOON
By | March 9th 2010

By Macharia Kamau and James Ratemo

Local Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry players have been advised to develop solutions to ward-off internet crime.

Security of data remains a tricky affair due to fast connectivity through the undersea fibre optic cables.

Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka cited the need to build capacity as a matter of urgency, to equip the industry with ability to detect cyber attacks and contain the vice before they cause damage.

"The recent infrastructure developments through the undersea cables have brought enormous benefits, but the flipside offers a front for a new warfare, as fast speeds give malicious Internet users opportunities to strike easily and make it difficult to detect them," he said.

Kalonzo spoke yesterday when he opened the 37th Internet Corporation for Assigned Numbers and Names (ICANN) meeting in Nairobi.

Data Insecurity

Other speakers at the meet also acknowledged that data security was increasingly becoming an critical issue in the global arena and more so for the region that has only started enjoying higher Internet speed.

"Definitely, with high speed Internet comes increased security needs and countries need to develop policies to ensure wider access and safety of Internet use," said Rod Beckstrom, the Chief Executive and President of ICANN.

Mr Sammy Buruchara, chairman of Kenya Network Information Centre (Kenic) reckons there are concerns about the reliability of the Internet in terms of security.

"We need to be sure that Internet as a tool we are increasingly relying on is safe and secure," he said.

The Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) said there are plans to set up local and regional security centres to manage cyber security. "The centre will manage cyber security issues in a co-ordinated and responsive manner," said CCK Director General Charles Njoroge.

ICANN challenged African countries to expand the reach of Internet through investing in infrastructure and liberalisation of Information and Communication Technology sectors to bring down ICT services cost.

Acess And Affordability

"We would like to encourage African leaders to make the Internet more accessible and affordable and in doing so encourage economic growth where online commerce is increasingly important," explained Beckstrom.

He further invited regional head of States attending the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development today at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre to walk into the ICANN conference as a show of commitment to using technology to help the region.

The five-day meeting is being hosted by Kenic, a local private-public sector initiative that operates and manages the Internet resources allocation and registration services.

The organisation manages the Kenya domain name space (.ke).

There are about 10,000 websites with the .ke domain names.

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