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Building Trust 25 November 2016

Supporting Internet Infrastructure security in Africa 

Betel Hailu
By Betel HailuCommunications Coordinator for the African Regional Bureau

In collaboration with the African Union Commission, the Internet Society will be holding an experts’ workshop on Internet Infrastructure Security from 28-29 November 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya. Selected experts from within and outside the continent are coming together with the goal of developing the Internet Security and Personal Data Protection Guidelines. It is expected that these guidelines will help African States implement the “African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection”.

Here’s The Background

On 27 June 2014, the African Union adopted the “African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection” during the 23rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. The Convention committed Member States to take certain actions to put a legal and institutional framework in place to reduce the risks of cybercrime and abuse of personal data. 

The Internet Society and the African Union Commission agreed to work together to draft guidelines on Internet Infrastructure security and personal data protection.

Here’s Why It Matters

The Internet is a critical infrastructure for Africa. People from around Africa use it more and more to communicate, to socialize and execute daily activities. Increasing number of Africans depend on the Internet for their daily activities which make it a critical tool that need to be protected. Unfortunately, there are major security threats that are preventing users from accessing the Internet or creating major hindrances in their Internet experience. In particular, attacks on Internet Infrastructure have and can cut off a whole population from the Internet creating serious damages. Therefore, protecting Internet infrastructures is critical in today’s Africa which has joined the information age.

The Internet Society is happy to support African Union’s endeavor as we firmly believe that Internet is critical for Africa’s growth and that it cannot be secured without the collaboration of various stakeholders such as the African Union and the Internet Society.

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