How Africa is increasingly being targeted by cybercriminals

By Marie Toulemonde

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Posted on December 8, 2021 08:28

Cybercrime TAR-02

The number of cyberattacks on the continent is exploding. Experts warn that drastic measures need to be taken. Which countries are most affected? What is the scale and cost of this threat? We reveal the answer through infographics.

Is Africa more heavily targeted by cybercrime than other continents? Interpol certainly thinks so. The figures gathered by the international police organisation, which published a detailed report on the subject on 21 October, are indisputable. Throughout the course of 2020, the number of cyberattacks recorded in certain regions more than doubled. In East Africa, the increase was as much as 55%, and across the continent as a whole, they are estimated to have cost a modest sum of $4.1bn. In Côte d’Ivoire alone, cybercrime has cost 20bn CFA francs (about $35m).

Unfortunately, Africa is a prime target due to its young and ultra-connected population, the widespread use of mobile phone banking and, above all, its serious cybersecurity deficiencies. These attacks are becoming more and more sophisticated and are being carried out by increasingly professional and organised cybercriminals. The continent as a whole is a major hotbed of cyber scammers.

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