Mr Ambrose Dery(second from right) interacting with Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful(left), Mr David Asante Apeatu(right) and other guests.

Mr Ambrose Dery(second from right) interacting with Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful(left), Mr David Asante Apeatu(right) and other guests.

Ghana is to lose 120 million US Dollars by the end of the year through cybercrimes, Mr Ambrose Dery, the Minister of Interior, has said.

 

He said as at August this year the amount lost to criminals in cybercrimes was to 97 million dollars.

 

‘’The total amount defrauded and stolen through cyberspace amounted to 35 million US dollars within the year 2016,there was an increase of the figure to 69.5 million in 2017 which is  almost 100 per cent increment’’,he added

 

Mr Dery said this at the 5th African Group meeting on cybercrime for heads   of Units in Accra yesterday.

 

The three day programme which was aimed at brainstorming on how to address cybercrime in the sub region brought together heads of cyber Units from 15 African Countries.

 

Mr Dery said the Criminal Investigation Department of the Ghana Police Service statistics in 2016 showed that 82 per cent of cases reported at the cyber unit were related to fraud.

The Minister said a research by McAfee and the Centre for Scientific for Strategic International Studies revealed  that cybercrime cost the world  $609 billion in 2017.

 

He said Ghana cyber arena has recorded significant developments within the last 18 months with the introduction of paperless ports process, digital property addressing system, mobile money interoperability systems and e-procurement among others.

 

Mr Dery said  the rapid changes in technology and the inabilities of users to meet the fast changing trend has led to vulnerabilities that criminals are taking advantage of.

 

He said to address the issue, Ghana dedicated the month of October 2018 for cyber security awareness to help create awareness and sensitize the citizenry of cybercrime activities.

 

‘’Ghana has also established the Nation Cyber Security Technical working group to implement our cyber security policy and strategy with the intention of improving our cyber security readiness and to reduce cybercrime incidence,” he stated.

 

Mr Dery called on head of units in the African region to network to address the cyber crime.

 

The Minister of Communications, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful stated that as part of effort to address the issue the Ministry in collaboration with the National Cyber Security Inter-Ministerial Advisory Council has embarked on initiatives and programmes to improve Ghana’s cyber security readiness.

 

‘’ Government with support of the World Bank  and the National Communication Authority has established a National cyber  Security  Centre to coordinate cyber security incidents both in government and with the private sector.’ She added.

 

Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said the Ministry in collaboration with the World Bank is to establish digital forensic laboratory at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Headquarters to enhance cybercrime policing efforts in the country.

 

The Inspector General of Police, Mr David Asante- Apeatu in his remarks said fighting crime cannot be by efforts of single country but rather a concerted effort among law enforcement agencies across different jurisdictions through sharing of best practices, technical capabilities and operations assistance.

 

He said cybercrime is a wakeup call for law enforcement across the world and Africa to find ways of solving crimes and removing barriers that posed differences in legislation policies and physical frontiers.

 

The acting Director of International Police (INTERPOL) Cybercrime Directorate, Mr Takayuki Oku commended the Ghana Police Service for the initiative.

He stressed the need for the security heads to deliberate on issues on cybercrime globally.

By Anita Nyarko- Yirenkyi

 

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