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Kenya, just like most developing nations around the world, is increasingly becoming a digital economy. Where businesses, universities, banking, and government services among other socio-economic activities are taking place online.

However, the country is yet to catch up with international best practice when it comes to cybersecurity. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why (allegedly) it has become a haven for North Korean hackers; more on that here.

We have also seen big tech companies such as Microsoft and Kaspersky Lab issue an alert over increasing cybercriminal activities facing online and digital services in the country. Check here and here.

We already know the country is a pioneer of mobile money services globally. Yet that service as proved by Kaspersky Lab is the next front of cybercriminal attack as just proven by Kaspersky Lab.

Yelbridges sets up a Cybersecurity Defence training center

The ICT firm Yelbridges has announced plans to set up a Virtual Conference Center in Thika, a town just a few minutes drive from the capital Nairobi. The center will be set up at a cost of Ksh. 150 million (about $1.5 million).

The Yelbridges Virtual Conference Center is said will have top of the class IT professionals in the country. Alongside being fitted with the state-of-the-art modern facilities to enable real simulation of an attack and how to defend against the intrusion.

According to the Africa cybersecurity report, 96% of cyber incidents either go unreported or unresolved and this is part of what the Virtual Conference Center will focus on,” said Steve Mambo, the COO of Yelbridges.

In Africa, there are less than 10,000 certified cybersecurity professionals to protect a population of over 1.3 billion people across the continent. East Africa faces an acute cyber security skills gap with IT teams lacking the know-how on cyber defense skills against cyber attacks.”

Mambo cites these reasons as the driving force behind Yelbridges decision to invest a multi-million shilling virtual center to enhance cyber defenses in the region. The further cites a recent report of the baseline cybersecurity survey, which says as many as 90% of organizations in Kenya run their online activities below the internationally set basic cybersecurity measures.

Partnerships with Local Universities and Hubs

The center is also said to be working on partnership deals with local universities and digital incubation hubs. It has already signed an MoU with the USIU-Africa and launched the Cyber4Growth program to offer specialized cybersecurity training to students at the university pursuing ICT-related courses.

Cyber4Growth program targets both private and public organizations to raise the level of security awareness in East Africa. We want to ensure that we walk with organizations in Kenya and across East Africa.

We also aim to promote the economic competitiveness of companies in the region by offering top-notch Cyber Defense Simulated training to IT professionals.”

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