Africa is grappling with a significant shortage of certified cybersecurity professionals, with a gap of around 100,000 individuals, according to a recent report by Liquid C2 titled “The Evolving Cyber Security Landscape in Africa 2022.” The report, released by Cassava Technologies-owned Liquid C2, highlights that the continent currently has only 7,000 certified cybersecurity professionals, equating to one professional for every 177,000 people. However, the report notes that this number may not fully capture the extent of the problem, as data on African governments’ investment in cybersecurity is lacking.
The report underscores the increasing urgency for businesses to invest in cybersecurity measures to mitigate reputational damage, financial losses, and potential business disruptions. Cyber attacks on businesses in Kenya, South Africa, and Zambia witnessed a significant rise last year, with a 76% increase overall. Kenyan businesses reported an 82% surge, while their South African and Zambian counterparts experienced a 62% increase each.
The report highlights the dominant methods used by cyber criminals, with email attacks, such as phishing or spam attacks, being the most common (61%), followed by compromised passwords (48%) and data breaches (44%). A concerning finding is that 61% of the companies surveyed reported breaches occurring due to remote or hybrid working arrangements.
While the surge in cyber attacks is alarming, the report offers some optimism. It reveals that all surveyed companies had made significant progress in their cloud and digital strategies and bolstered their cybersecurity capabilities. Moreover, 68% of the companies interviewed had either hired cybersecurity staff members or partnered with cybersecurity teams in the past year. However, the report emphasizes the need for ongoing vigilance and investment in robust cybersecurity measures to combat evolving threats and avoid complacency.
David Behr, CEO of Liquid C2, emphasizes the importance of businesses adapting to the rapidly changing cybercrime landscape and the need to invest in effective cybersecurity solutions. He urges companies to prioritize protection, rapid response, threat intelligence, prevention, compliance, and enhanced business reputation through partnerships with cybersecurity experts.