INTERPOL Report Identifies Top Cyberthreats in Africa

INTERPOL Report Identifies Top Cyberthreats in Africa

An Analysis of Cyber Trends

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New INTERPOL Report Findings Will Support Coordinated Action In Africa Against CybercrimeCybercrime Cybercrime is a crime related to technology, computers, and the Internet. Typical cybercrime are performed by a computer against a computer, or by a hacker using software to attack computers or networks.

A new report published by INTERPOL (see below) gives key insights into cybercrime in Africa. The result of cross-sector collaboration, the African Cyberthreat Assessment Report 2021 will help countries in Africa to understand the most prevalent threats and formulate a coordinated regional response to cybercrime.

Digital Transformation

CybercrimesCybercrimes Cybercrime is a crime related to technology, computers, and the Internet. Typical cybercrime are performed by a computer against a computer, or by a hacker using software to attack computers or networks. affect all countries, but weak networks and security make countries in Africa particularly vulnerable.

While Africa has an estimated 500 million Internet users, this equates to just 38 percent of the population, leaving huge potential for growth. Africa has the fastest-growing telephone and Internet networks in the world and makes the widest use of mobile banking services.

This digital demand, coupled with a lack of cybersecurity policies and standards, exposes online services to major risks. As African countries move to incorporate digital infrastructure into all aspects of society – including government, banking, business, and critical infrastructure – it is crucial to put a robust cybersecurity framework into place.

The Main Cyberthreats In Africa

The INTERPOL report identifies the most prominent threats in Africa, based on input from INTERPOL member countries and data drawn from private sector partners.

The top five threats are:

  • Online scamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost.: fake emails or text messages claiming to be from a legitimate source are used to trick individuals into revealing personal or financial information;
  • Digital extortion: victims are tricked into sharing sexually compromising images which are used for blackmail;
  • Business email compromise: criminals hack into email systems to gain information about corporate payment systems, then deceive company employees into transferring money into their bank account;
  • RansomwareRansomware Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim's files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them. In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult. Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan virus disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one high-profile example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction.: cybercriminals blockBlock Blocking is a technical action usually on social media or messaging platforms that restricts or bans another profile from seeing or communicating with your profile. To block someone on social media, you can usually go to their profile and select it from a list of options - often labeled or identified with three dots ••• the computer systems of hospitals and public institutions, then demand money to restore functionality;
  • Botnets: networks of compromised machines are used as a tool to automate large-scale cyberattacks.

From analysis to action

“Not only do criminals exploit vulnerabilities in cyber security across the region, but they also take advantage of variations in law enforcement capabilities across physical borders,” said Craig Jones, INTERPOL’s Director of Cybercrime.

“INTERPOL’s regional cybercrime strategy for Africa provides a robust framework for sharing intelligence and coordinating action to strengthen the law enforcement response across Africa and beyond,” added Mr. Jones.

The strategy focuses on the areas of criminalCriminal A criminal is any person who through a decision or act engages in a crime. This can be complicated, as many people break laws unknowingly, however, in our context, it is a person who makes a decision to engage in unlawful acts or to place themselves with others who do this. A criminal always has the ability to decide not to break the law, or if they initially engage in crime to stop doing it, but instead continues. intelligence, law enforcement operations, regional capacity and capabilities, and awareness campaigns for businesses and the general public.

Implementation will be driven by INTERPOL’s African Cybercrime Operations Desk, working in close partnership with key regional stakeholders, in particular, the African Union and Afripol, law enforcement communities, and the private sector.

INTERPOL African Cyberthreat Assessment Report 2021

INTERPOL African Cyberthreat Assessment Report 2021

Essential Tools For Every ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. Victim From SCARS Publishing

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