August 17, 2020

Cyber Attacks: Upgrading CERRT will save Nigeria – Pantami

What Pantami said about BVN, NIN

Minister of Communications, Dr. Isa Ibrahim Pantami

Minister of Communications, Dr. Isa Ibrahim Pantami

By Emmanuel Elebeke

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has said that the upgraded Computer Emergency Response and Readiness Team, CERRT built by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) will reduce further attacks and make Nigeria’s cyberspace safer.

The Minister stated this on Monday at the official commissioning of newly constructed NITDA’s Complex-Building which houses: Digital Studio for Virtual Learning; Computer Emergency Response and Readiness Team and the agency’s new Logo, Vision and Mission.

He said the three projects were strategically built in line with Digital Economy Policy and Strategy of President Muhammadu Buhari for a Digital Nigeria.

According to Pantami, the existing CERRT was upgraded with world-class facilities to meet the needs of the present reality and to mitigate and reduce further attacks on the country to a bearable minimum.

This, he said would go a long way in complimenting the efforts of the administration in tackling the high wave of insecurity in the country and put the economy on a better footing as well as boosting the anti-corruption war.

On the Digital Studio, the Minister explained that the goal is to attain most of the key priority areas of the President, particularly capacity building on digital skills.

‘‘The upgrade of the CERRT is in alignment with the three priority areas of President Muhammadu Buhari, which is to promote security.

‘‘Today there are many challenges with regards to security based on what is happening online. With CERRC teams, we will be able to be the watchdog of the federal government, monitor potential cyber-criminals attacks on our country, come up with policies and strategies to see how we can prevent our country from the attacks or at least reduce it to the barest minimum.”

‘‘Digital media studio is also in alignment with the programme of the president.

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What we try to achieve with these projects is to ensure that these key priority areas. Through digital services we will be able to attain most of the programmes of the president.’’

For the logo, the Pantami said the old one was changed in line with the new thinking and policy direction of the government which has moved from focusing on ICT to now digital transformation, saying that plans were ongoing to rebrand every parastals under the ministry for optimal service delivery.

‘‘The old logo was changed because the policy of government has changed. Before now, we have been working on IT Policy since 2009. But today, the world has gone digital, leading to the renaming of the ministry.

‘‘Part of what we agreed with stakeholders is to build digital economy. The journey started in October 2019, which led to the approval and launching of the digital economy policy for digital Nigeria. Now it is no longer about ICT but digital transformations.

‘‘For us, there is need to rebrand all parastatals because logo is key to each and institution. It give first impression and projects the vision and mission of an organization. Prio to this, NITDA and NCC had been mandated to create independent department for digital economy.

‘‘With Pandemic, we are trying to fast track the entire policy and see how we will be able to attain them by 2025 rather than earlier 2030 earlier scheduled, though, some had already been attained but we are optimistic they are achievable.’’

Earlier in his address, the Director General of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi alluded to the importance of the centre to security, the digitalization of the country’s economy and the rebranding of the agency.

Abdullahi said with the upgraded CERRT, our cyberspace would be insulated from frequent attacks and save from the country from loss of huge resources.

And with the new NITDA logo, the NITDA boss said that the agency is better positioned to prioritize its goals for digital Nigeria.

While promising to redouble his effort, he promised to put the digital to empower build capacities on digital skills.