Ghana faces escalating cyber threats with financial sector the prime target – Report discloses
The 2023 Ghana Fintech Report reveals an alarming prevalence of cyber fraud, positioning it as the foremost cybercrime in the country. Perpetrators, employing tactics such as credit card fraud, identity fraud, and romance fraud, create fictitious online profiles or deceptive websites to extract money or personal information from unsuspecting victims.
Per the report, the financial sector emerges as a particularly attractive target, with hackers exploiting vulnerabilities in online banking systems. The Bank of Ghana’s Fraud Report for 2022 underscores the severity, highlighting cyber email fraud as a top-tier category resulting in losses of GH4.3 million, marking a 65.5% surge from the previous year.
The report indicates a surge in cyber threats and online attacks, encompassing a spectrum from individual-focused phishing attacks to complex cyber espionage campaigns impacting businesses and government entities. Since the launch of the Cybercrime Incident Reporting Points of Contact (PoC) in October 2019, a total of 11,550 cybercrime cases have been reported, illustrating the escalating nature of the issue.
The repercussions extend beyond the digital realm, impacting individuals, businesses, and the nation’s economy. For individuals, financial risks and personal privacy breaches lead to unauthorized transactions, stolen credit card information, and emotional distress. Businesses face financial losses, reputation damage, and potential legal consequences, with ransomware attacks disrupting operations and smaller enterprises facing closure.
The report underscores the importance of ongoing technological development and integration to fortify defenses in the face of growing cyber threats. While acknowledging the role of technology in enhancing online safety, it cautions against viewing it as a panacea.
Emphasizing the need for careful design, evaluation, and regulation of technology solutions, the report advocates for effectiveness, reliability, transparency, accountability, and respect for users’ rights in the quest for robust cybersecurity measures.