February 15th 2018                          By Christine Mwaura

Kenya is set to host the first African Cyber Defense Summit in July this year, to develop strategies to respond to cyber security threats in the continent.

Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said the continental Summit would be critical in tackling the challenge of securing Africa from breaches and attacks against valuable ICTs.

The Summit will bring together governments and global ICT industry players. The government is organizing the summit with support from the International Telecommunication Union and the African Union in partnership with NASEBA, Africa Cyberspace Network.

Kenya is one of the most connected countries in Africa with 78% broadband connectivity. This therefore means it is vulnerable to increasing number of information security threats from around the world.

ICT Secretary Dr. Kate Getao said there are discussions on need to establish Pan African Cyber security Research Institute in Kenya to build high-level skill and knowledge institutional capacity and innovation for enhanced cyber security across Africa. Dr Getao said the proposed Institute would also provide repository and real time data.

She said Africa needs a Cyber Research institute because the continent has invested massively in ICT. She added that the need for an Institute prompted by shortage of high-level skill human resource, vulnerability of the supply chain and internal and external threats cyberspace to breaches. She said investing in cyber security and policy and legislative frameworks encourage investors to invest in the continent.

Ms Violet Mulwa, an ICT officer said a draft on information security policy developed is to protect public and private ICT assets.

The Africa Cyber Defense Summit is scheduled for July 9th to10th 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya.