Africa needs sound measures against cyber threats

With more people gaining ICT knowledge, Internet users are becoming more exposed to newer online threats thus accelerating growth in projects, including iCode.org, aimed at minimizing the threats.

According to TechCentral, South African Internet Service Providers are now teaming up to safeguard the Internet users. They have in addition collaborated with Australian Internet security project iCode.org in a move focused on enhancing Web security.

ICode has been tried in Australia since 2010. The service enables Internet Service Providers to check the machines infected by malware, and to help their clients secure their computers, data and online communication. iCode gives ISPs tools that can help track malware in their systems and in their clients systems. South Africa will be the second country to implement the iCode after Australia.

According to Microsoft’s 2010 Security Intelligence Report, Microsoft desktop anti-malware products alone removed bots from 6.5 million computers around the world over the second quarter of 2010. During a three-month period in Australia, it translated to 66,576 computers, or about 2.8 systems per 1000.

Peter Coroneos, the founder of iCode.org, said: “We’re at the point now where the average home user is no longer in a position to manage this themselves.”

Google has in the recent past also tried to warn users of sites that have been infected by Malware. Google puts up a warning page, telling users to be careful when visiting such sites. The warning is however removed when website owners track and remove malware from their servers.

Information analysts at Nairobi’s Startup Garage said, for a continent that is spiraling to the Internet age, Africa needs to put in place sound measures more than just anti-virus in curbing cyber threats — which can slow down the pace of growth.

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