7th Annual Cyber Defence East Africa Conference Kicks Off

Once again, Uganda is hosting the Annual and Regional Cyber Defence East Africa 2019 conference. This year’s conference is focused on the Financial Sector.

The two-day conference is hosting more than 100 cyber security professionals along with policy makers and representatives from the financial sector in Uganda and other East Africa countries.

This sector is one of the most targeted by attackers and cyber criminals. The conference aims to explore how to build a robust cybersecurity ecosystem within the financial sector.

The event is co-organized by  NRD Cyber Security, a cybersecurity operation building, technology consulting, incident response and applied research company based in Europe with operations all over the world together with the National Information Technology Authority – Uganda (NITA-U).

Along with discussions on what could and should be done in terms of regulations and cyber resilient culture building within the region, the 2-day event will address such important topics as microfinancing and Fintech.

The Fintech industry is one of the disruptors of the global financial sector as it acts as an enabler to better, faster and more transparent services to the consumers by utilising new technologies.

Sigitas Rokas, NRD

Sigitas Rokas from NRD Cyber Security mentioned that Africa is the 2nd fastest financial market globally and most profitable which makes it a top target for cyber related crimes – the risks are real. He guided that this will further require a re-shape in policy in order to manage the risks and promote trust amongst users.

Micro-lending platforms are gaining more and more prominence within the financial sector, however the sector yet to be digitalized.


This presents a great opportunity to think ahead about cyber security and incorporate it into the process of the sectors digitization.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Arnold Mangeni – Director Information Security at NITA-U said that the Government of Uganda through NITA-U is committed to enhancing cyber security in all sectors of the economy and such conferences are a good way to involve all stakeholders in the process.

He further mentioned that as per its Act, NITA-U plays a central coordination role for cyber security.

“Working with the Uganda Bankers Association, we completed customization of the National Information Security Framework (NISF) for the banks which creates a minimum baseline of cyber security controls. Our next initiative is to collaborate on establishing the Financial Sector CERT. I’m happy to report that we have recently completed a National Cyber Security Risk Assessment through which the financial sector was profiled in collaboration – making a foundation for enhancing our approach to cyber security,” said Arnold Mangeni.

Emmanuel Mugabi , Manager information security at NITA-U

The Government of Uganda through NITA-U has rolled out a National Payment Gateway to enhance efficiency in how citizens pay for various e-government services in a seamless and hustle free manner with various payment modes.

To date, Nine Banks and two Mobile payment telecoms are already operating on this network. Such initiatives enhance trust in use of e-service.




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