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Experts Warn of Impending Global ‘Cyber Pandemic’

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The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted global working culture. A recent survey by Checkpoint indicates that 95 per cent of security professionals are facing added IT security challenges due to the coronavirus. The shifts were global, rapid, and widespread.

Dr. Adewale Obadare

To this end that, Dr. Adewale Obadare, cofounder, Digital Encode, has likened the coronavirus pandemic facing the world to an impending global cyber-attack described as Cyber Pandemic.

According to him, “people and organizations have suffered greatly from the coronavirus pandemic. Many critical lessons are being learned, but none more important that another devastating crisis could be brewing. A catastrophic cyber event has long been envisioned, and with today’s digitally connected world, a global cyber pandemic is now a reality.

“The coronavirus that the world is facing is biological pandemic but the next global crisis is going to be called ‘Cyber pandemic’.

“Cyber pandemic just the same way as coronavirus which is biological in nature, there is going to be digital virus or cyber virus that is going to infiltrate a lot of computer systems globally.

“This is not to create fear for anyone. Don’t forget that as we gravitate through digital colonies using technology to drive our businesses and predominantly everything that we are involved in, there come so many risks. Just like during coronavirus pandemic, World Health Organisation comes out with best practices on what to do especially the issue of social distancing comes, the same way we have health best practices that we will have cyber hygiene. The same way you practice personal hygiene is how you will learn to practice cyber hygiene.

Obadare explained that to practice cyber hygiene starts with situation awareness that cyber security experts are creating, just like WHO is creating awareness about coronavirus.

“In cyber hygiene you try to prevent your system from been digitally evaded, we talk about asset distancing just like human beings are practising physical distancing now.

“Asset distancing in the cyber security world means to put measured that will separate and protect your system, one of those measures is network segmentation for the corporates. You need to segment your enterprises and network environment making sure that the way your system relate with public internet does not put your system at risk.

“The only way to achieve this is to make sure that you have good Patch management system this means that your system is up to date. Don’t use system that has been declared end of life.

“For instance, a lot of people are still using Windows XP and they are connected to the internet. Microsoft has declared end of life for Windows XP. If you are using Windows XP you are at risk and not practising cyber hygiene and with that, hackers can break into your system because you can’t practise Patch management with Windows XP. Depending on the platform that you are using,” he added.

Corroborating Obadare, Kenneth Okereafor, a Cybersecurity expert and Cyberspace defender, said that the “cyber pandemic” is already here with us.

“In every crisis including the COVID-19 pandemic, cyber-criminals are among the first to capitalize on fear, uncertainty, and doubt to exploit innocent victims. The cyberspace is currently hyperactive on account of increased patronage of online services occasioned by the COVID-19 restriction protocols.

“As a result, hackers and online fraudsters have taken advantage of the crisis to launch coordinated computer attacks using sophisticated combinations of social engineering and phishing emails to push ransomware and other exploits.

“This has resulted in identity theft, operational disruption, and revenue loss. In high profile cases such as the zoom-bombing episode in April and the 15th July Twitter hacks, the impacts could be scandalous,” he said.


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FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

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Federal government on Tuesday announced that it has developed initiatives for the adoption of Artificial Intelligence technology in Nigeria.

FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

 

The establishment of a Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics in Nigeria (CFAIR) is also expected soon.

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) said that AI applications enable innovative solutions, improve risk assessment, better planning, and faster knowledge-sharing.

Abdullahi Usman Gambo, director of IT Infrastructure Solution, NITDA, spoke at a workshop in commemoration of International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

He noted that AI would open up opportunities for access to information and also help to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations (UN) in the 2030 Agenda.

Gambo said: “Artificial Intelligence is poised to revolutionize the way we go about our daily lives – from governance to business, legislation to medicine to defence, etc. We can all agree that AI is humanity’s new frontier.

“We have developed initiatives for adoption of emerging technologies such as AI, strengthen cybersecurity, digital skills for digitally excluded citizens while enhancing the regulatory and market environment to increase access to ICTs, and promote seamless access to information.

“We believe AI and associated emerging technologies will completely enhance the speed, efficiency and effectiveness of information gathering during the exchange of data or the ways of communication,” he said.

Delivering his paper, Yushau Shuaib, publisher of PRNigeria, described access to information as the right of the citizens to accurate, transparent, and timely facts and figures.

The former National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) spokesman stated that governments at all levels have obligations to communicate with people, while the public has the right to know and criticize authorities through constructive engagement.

The media executive, however, appealed to Nigerians not to use social media platforms for fake news dissemination.

“The merits of new media on affordability, accessibility and instant delivery are occasionally marred by the fact that social media is sometimes used to spread fake news”, he said.

Shuaib called for collaboration of stakeholders in ensuring appropriate legislation through public awareness campaigns in order to improve access to universal information.


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Samsung Unveils Technologically Advanced 2020 Consumer Products

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Samsung Electronics Nigeria has unveiled its 2020 consumer products range. The launch which held in Victoria Island, Lagos showcased the latest in its revolutionary and innovative QLED and Crystal UHD Television Series  along with Wind Free Air Conditioners, Side by Side Refrigerators and Drum Washing Machines.

Keeping with its resolve to utilize its transformative ideas and technologies to shape the future and inspire the whole world, Samsung has once again demonstrated its determination to continuously redefine the living space and entertainment of its customers.

According to Mr. Caden Chiyeon Yu, Managing Director, Samsung Electronics Nigeria, “QLED uses exceptional and revolutionary technology which offers an unparalleled visual and auditory adventure from the comfort of your living room. QLED series is available in 4K or 8K and from 58″ to 98”, and was designed with options to fit any space and budget”. For Crystal UHD Television, Mr. Yu said, with cutting-edge Crystal Display, the new Crystal UHD TV will bring high-resolution content to life in a whole new way, delivering a viewing experience like never before in a mainstream UHD TV.

Also showcased at the launch were the new Windfree Air Conditioner, Drum Washing Machines and Side by Side refrigerators. The Windfree Air Conditioner is designed specially with the latest technology to provide coolness in quick time while ensuring that users don’t experience any chills through out its use. It also has an in-built digital inverter which reduces energy consumption by 73 percent. .

The newly introduced drum washing machine of 2020 from Samsung is very efficient and is built with eco bubble technolgy which allows it to provide cleaning of very dirty garments or clothes without the use of water.  Futhermore, the new Side by Side Refrigetor was built with Spacemax technology which has enabled  Samsung to offer more spacious interior without increasing the external dimentions or compromising energy efficiency.

Also speaking at the event, Mrs. Oluwaremilekun Adesola-Ogunsan, Head, Consumer Electronics, Samsung Nigeria stated that “Samsung understands the economic diffulties currently being experienced in the country and has consistently produced pocket friendly premium consumer products. We are very consistent in our approach as we understand that our customers like the good things of life and we have provided that without compromising our standards”. “So I can say boldy that there is a Samsung for everybody regardless of your income stream” She added.

In 2019, the Samsung consumer range of products received universal praise for its innovative quality and design and numerous pioneering features. This year Samsung has added even more beneficial features which its customers will appreciate in great deal.

 


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CWG Plc Empowers Small Businesses in Nigeria with SME Solution

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Pan-African Information and Communications Technology Company, CWG Plc has said the essence of its Enterprise Resource Planning Solution (SMERP) that runs on the cloud is to empower small and medium enterprises in Nigeria and offer them the required tools to manage their entire business.

Mr. Dolapo Orogbemi, Product Manager for SMERP, who disclosed this recently to the media, noted that with SMEs contributing massively to Nigeria’s economy and creating both direct and indirect jobs, SMERP was designed intentionally to help SMEs thrive.

“Since inception, it has been the number one goal for us here at CWG because we have always identified the potential for SMEs once they are provided with the right support.

Thus, SMERP was designed to make available enabling tools for all SMEs across Africa at a relatively affordable price and to also make their business operations lean where they can save more resources to increase profitability,” he said.

Dolapo explained that in support of SMEs, SMERP has provided an effective ERP tailored to the SME market, providing services such as Inventory Management, E-commerce platform, Accounting, Point of Sale and Customer Relationship Management tool.

He argued that one of the major reasons SMEs don’t survive beyond the early stage of their business is due to inadequate funding to scale the business and this has become a default gap in the SME sector.

But with the CWG’s SMERP solution, SMEs can take proper records of their day-to-day business transactions to present to financial institutions as proof of profitability and project business growth for them.

According to him, SMERP’s competitive edge is based on value to the SMEs where they can have access to a complete ERP solution at an affordable price, stressing that the solution enables each SME with special requirements to execute their business needs.

For more information on SMERP kindly visit www.smerp.ng to start a 14-days free trial.


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