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CSA launches cyber security awareness month 

The cyber security awareness week will focus on the importance of cultivating a mindset that promotes responsible online practices

This year’s national cyber security awareness month has been launched in Accra with a call on Ghanaians to embrace digital practices that mitigate against cyber threats and risks.

Being marked under the theme “Promoting a Culture of Digital Safety,” the month long commemoration would involve stakeholder engagements on cybersecurity service licensing and accreditation regulatory regimes, joint initiatives with cybersecurity committee institutions, private sector and international partners, public sensitisation on traditional and social media platforms, among others.

It will focus on highlighting the importance of cultivating a collective mindset and behaviour that promotes responsible online practices, cybersecurity awareness and the protection of personal information.

The month long event is also expected to increase public awareness and understanding of digital safety issues, resulting in improved risk alerts and informed decision-making by Ghanaians.

The Minister for Communications and Digitalisation, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, in a statement read on her behalf at the launch by her deputy, Ama Pomaa Boateng said the event was expected to help create synergy between public and private sector stakeholder groups to intensify awareness about the importance of cybersecurity and the inherent risks associated with it.

The knowledge shared through the awareness programmes, she noted, would help the public, businesses, and government to appreciate the ongoing work of the Cyber Security Authority (CSA) including the need to protect the country’s Critical Information Infrastructure (CII).

In addition, Mrs Owusu-Ekuful stated that, Ghana was working to strengthen its legal and policy regime to address Online Child Sexual Exploitation and abuse.

She noted that, on Child Online Protection, the CSA had intensified its education of cybersecurity best practices among children over the years with more than 136,000 children sensitised across the country’s 16 regions.

The Director-General of the CSA, Dr Albert Antwi-Boasiako for his part said cybersecurity had become a priority for nations across the globe due to the fast-evolving nature of cybercrime and the shift of criminals from traditional to more complex digital crimes.

He noted that, currently cybercrime including hacking, identity theft, phishing, malware attacks required rapt attention and specific investments to curb the threats.

The significance of cybersecurity awareness, he said, had never been more apparent in the modern era as it goes a long way in shoring up the country’s security and promotes education on the existing threats to encourage more proactive and responsive measures.

In response to rising cybersecurity threats, the CSA, he noted, was currently implementing several regulatory activities including the Licensing of Cybersecurity Service Providers and Accreditation of Cybersecurity Establishments, and Cybersecurity Professionals.

“For the first time in the history of this country, Cybersecurity Service Providers, Cyber Establishments and Cybersecurity Professionals will not be able to operate until they obtain a license or accreditation from the CSA.

The Authority commenced the process of licensing and accreditation on March 1, 2023. This regulatory regime is designed to ensure that licensed and accredited entities are legally empowered to engage in legitimate business,” Dr Antwi-Boasiako stated.

The Minister for National Security, Albert Kan-Dapaah called for collaborative efforts between all the security agencies, the private sector and individuals to deal with the threats of cyber attacks in the country.

Reporting by Philip Asiawo in Accra

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