By CHILA NAMAIKO –
CYGOV, an Israeli company, with world-class experts in cyber-security, has expressed interest in partnering Government to set up a Cyber-Security Institute in Zambia.
Through the institute, CyGov wants to assist Zambia in curbing the growing cyber crimes such as the use of malicious software to hack into computer systems.
CyGov also provides assessments of cyber capabilities in comparison with global benchmarks such as security in the short, medium, and long-term with system solutions to protect governments from threats.
Meanwhile, the Government intends to pass Bills in Parliament to regulate the use of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) in Zambia.
A few days ago, computers in 150 countries were hit by hackers exploiting malicious software stolen from the National Security Agency and executed damaging cyber attacks, forcing Britain’s public health system to send patients away, freezing computers in Russia’s Interior Ministry and wreaking havoc on tens of thousands of computers elsewhere.
The attacks amounted to an audacious global blackmail attempt spread over the Internet, and underscored the vulnerabilities of the digital age.
CyGov chief strategy officer Eli Ben-Meir said in Lusaka yesterday that if left unchecked, cyber crimes had potential to reverse economic gains of many countries.
General Meir said when he called on Transport and Communications Minister Brian Mushimba that there was need to enforce measures to curb cyber crime.
“We are here to share our expertise and partner with you (Government) by setting up a cyber-security institute to help curb threats arising from cyber crimes and cyber security,” Gen Meir said.
He said the use of ICTs had brought some challenges and as such, CyGov, had set out to assist governments globally in improving their cyber protection.
Mr Mushimba said the establishment of a cyber-security institute would notably help to curb ICTs abuse.
The minister was confident that the collaboration with CyGov would enhance monitoring mechanisms on both cyber crime and cyber-security.
He said the coming of CyGov was timely as it followed President Edgar Lungu’s recent visit to Israel where he met investors wanting to invest in Zambia.
Mr Mushimba will also take to Parliament four Bills, namely, Cyber crime, Cyber-security, Data Protection, Electronic Transactions and Communications Bills to address abuse of the Internet.
The Cyber crime Bill would, among other matters, criminalise computer-based offences and network-related crime.
The Bill on Cyber security would govern steps that potential cyber crime victims would take to protect themselves, and speak into Child Online Protection.
The Data Protection Bill would provide for the protection of personal information and communications.
The Bill on Electronic Transactions and Communications would focus on providing for the use, security, facilitation and regulation of electronic communications and transactions.