Cybersecurity SME’s are the future | Abdul-Hakeem Ajijola | TEDxPortHarcourt

May 20, 2019 posted by

where are we and where do we need to be one of the challenges we have in life oops okay good let's stop that look at the diagram very very clearly what do we see can anybody tell me okay on the plains of Africa when that zebra gets up in the morning it knows that it has to run faster than the fastest lion if not what happens to it good and that lion also knows that if it doesn't catch the slowest zebra what happens good so on the plains of Africa when the Sun comes up whether you think you're a lion or whether you think you're the zebra you'd better be hustling so we better move forward with life and we better talk about how we're going to hustle oops but you will notice with the zebra it doesn't have a crash helmet it's not secure and one of the things about life is while you hustle please find ways not to crash and burn this is the thing we have to keep in mind now I don't need to bore you too much with too much technology and jargon but we're in the cyber age whether you think you are or you are not whether you're into the technology or you are not it is the reality of where we exist and one of the challenges that we see is that there is a shift in the balance of power is it WikiLeaks who tells us everything the government doesn't want us to know is it anonymous whom we don't really know but who attacked our infrastructure to drive home certain points or is it traditional government that we are used to and these are a lot of questions we have to ask ourselves for example the UK Department of Defense says they have over 600,000 botnet attacks every day it's not just about attacking government even private sector entities Visa Mastercard even Nigeria about a year ago the Nigeria gov which is supposed to be our flagship national website was brought down through a denial of service attack and very quickly a denial of service basically is you infect millions of computers with whether you call it a worm or a virus is not important but what that entity does it tells all those computers at the same point in time go through this door ask this website for something and you look at this hall today the drawer over on my right can you imagine if a hundred thousand people wanted to go in at the same time what would happen it would break apart that is what denial of service is all about but the real issue I want to put across to you is why was the denial-of-service attack twisted on our national website the gentleman who happened to be Irish was interviewed and said you know waiting can sign you on Nigeria Irishman he said well the Nigerian Senate passed an anti-gay law and because of that he felt he needed to teach us a lesson so it's politics but my point here is that it affects all of us you and I do remember the Tunisian Revolution some or was it the spring we called it hackers went after some key Tunisian government installations two of them in particular one was the central bank Clearing House and the other one was what we call the top-level domain when you hit the Central Bank Clearing House if you can bring it down you cannot get money from your ATM you cannot get money with your card you cannot transfer money you cannot receive money imagine that happening for an hour for a day for a week what would happen to our economy and these things have also happened in places like Estonia and Georgia again in 2013 we are told the statistics tell us that over 40 million cyber incidents occurred things are happening we are sitting in this hole very comfortably but there's a lot going on around the world I'm not here to scare you but I'm here to tell you that these challenges presenters with opportunities we need to protect the users ourselves we need to protect our infrastructure and we need to protect our processes we don't expect somebody from somewhere else to come and protect us in our own home we have to do this ourselves mobile phones latest statistics tell us in Nigeria we have over 130 million mobile phone lines in use we have a capacity of about 170 but 130 million I in use so we must look at mobile infrastructure because each and every one of us in this room today I'm sure uses a mobile phone but we also must use cloud infrastructure and look at how to protect it when we go online we don't know who is the dog and we don't know who the real deal you have a young brother sibling daughter cousin 13 years old 12 years old talking to another 12 year old in many instances that other 12 year old is not a 12 year old girl or boy but a 69 year old man who is a pedophile so how do we protect our children it's critical we think about this many of us here in the audience today care passionately about our privacy we care that our personal our HIV status is private it's for us but yet what do we do we post our life and our misgivings and our thoughts about people on Facebook 1.5 billion users if Facebook was a country after China in India it would be the third largest country in the world and yet we broadcast our personal information on all of it so security starts with us and yes we can't hide anymore I promise each and every one of you if I took off my shirt and my trousers on my underwear and started dancing for you what would you do bring out the camera go click click click click I said look what happened at Ted you can't hide so you must comport yourself we've had cases of officials I think was last mile where somebody was recorded remember that incident it happens this is part of we individually and collectively securing ourselves who else uses the cloud some very very interesting characters how many of us in this Hall today have tried to download a TED video please put up your hands has it been easy it's been very easy I think for me it's been difficult sometimes stops in the middle of one but Boko Haram can post a 30 minute a 40 minute a 59 minute video online how do they do it it's interesting isn't it they also send a lot of SMS texts to people and so even in this part of the world we have men they used to send a lot of email messages so these groups also these interesting characters are using and leveraging these technologies so who are your adversaries think about it who are we up against now I'm going to show you a photograph of some youngsters remember this was in 2002 they actually hacked into some of these websites the ringleader is the person in the middle you laugh how many of us in this room please put up your hand can hack how many of you have 12 years experience at hacking oh and you think you can compete with them you're in trouble big trouble we have our national strategic interest we must create jobs we must start by protecting ourselves for us by us we must be able to reduce the cost of IT this administration for example is banking a lot of its reputation of our money of our effort on broadband technology if broadband works for us it would be wonderful but who here will use broadband if it is not safe who will go to the market if it is not safe who will drive on the roads in the night if it is not safe so our safety and security will is the only guarantor that these technologies will work for us for those of you over there this cybersecurity thing is relatively young I've tried to demonstrate that it's growing rapidly so you need to consider how can you invest your time and efforts here to reap certain rewards what niches are there for you to carve out and exploit and yes we need to aggregate Nigeria is not enough we need to look at West Africa can we develop West Africa solutions not just rivers or Nigeria solutions there are lots of things we have to keep in mind and one of them is a term that I heard several years ago called techno colonization and basically it's colonialism as we read about it in school but applied in this realm of Technology there are countries that they smile at us but they will restrict us when you look at encryption when it was initially developed in the u.s. they refused to allow export because it was – we are not responsible enough to manage it so we have to develop our own we have to be able to control our own connectivity broadband is excellent but if your email has to go through Chicago to come back to the person in the other row that's not good enough we need our local internet exchange points we need more importantly to develop sustainable businesses small scale enterprises that employ people like you those under 35 years of age that in the long run is what is going to provide us with the level of security we need now Nigeria is actually embarking on a cybersecurity the development of a cybersecurity ecosystem and this generally this image generally shows some of these stakeholders and players in yellow and red here the innovators that's you you need to occupy that space you need to own that space you need to drive that space you need to be able to provide goods and services products and services to all the other players in this proposed framework now I've been very honored to be part of in fact the lead consultant for the National Information Technology Development Agency NIDA who funded and continued to support the development of this computer emergency readiness and response ecosystem for Nigeria and net that graciously gave us the leeway to be able to put in place a number of things but this is just very quickly to show you we've done some capacity building we've provided some equipment for a cyber forensics laboratory and yes we also have basically what we call a fusion center where we can look at information coming in from various places so this is actually up and running it's working again one of the very very interesting things that we've done within the fusion center is something called a honey pot and the honey pot basically allows us geographically to tree to track the source of hackers and the hackers believe it or not come from all over the place Russia China America the UK South Africa you name it they are trying you see as Nigerians we often worry Oh what are we sending to the world what are we attacking the world but how is the world attacking us and what are we doing to protect ourselves and like I said all of these challenges open up opportunities for you these are for you vulnerability management development of apps and software standards and testing today there is no bank that doesn't want to have some kind of card ATM or whatever but those cards must meet certain standards the bank cannot do that business who is helping them not just to develop the standards but to maintain the standards to do the repeat training that is required so that people may stay with instant these are the kind of consulting opportunities that are there for you you can even set up cybersecurity associations and bodies so you don't have to be in quote that guru but yes if you can understand IP addressing it does help if you don't you can learn it it's easy so you go on intrusion detection cyber fraud I mean these niches these opportunities abound it is for you to take them and we need to look at the income models yes pay-as-you-go as they say cash-and-carry you also have public/private partnerships you have social entrepreneurship and like many of the large corporations in the world that leverage advertising revenues this is how you can make money this is it's money that pays your children's school fees the buys your car that puts diesel in your generator that pays for your maintenance so again these are just some of the models and I will move along a little faster but you need some skill sets you need to have some level of information literacy you just don't go into this thing blind please ladies and gentlemen remember like any other business in the world today if you are not globally competitive you are not competitive bottom line so please understand if you are taking an exam as a high school students your competition is not the high school down the road your competition is the high school in Hong Kong in New York in London or Lancaster wherever in in Paris wherever it happens to be you must think in those kind of terms and that is it thinking is actually free when you are building your business when you are building your opportunity do not focus exclusively on high tech it's a combination of high tech low tech and in many instances no technology at all some would say common sense some would say muscle power whatever it is so you need to look at these things we are trying to build a 21st century knowledge society and the truth of the matter is that we haven't a clue how to protect it and that worries me personally and it should worry each and every one of you our infrastructure that we are building the government is spending a lot of money on power as it should and as it must but how are those infrastructure protected we have to think about these things and yes these tools are extremely powerful they cut both ways people can monitor your phone lines people can monitor your calls I'm not talking about government people I'm talking about private enterprises any of you with an Android phone and a Google account please after this log on to and login you will see where you have been for the last 30 days and for those young men don't let madam see it so ladies and gentlemen where do we need to be I propose where we need to be is at a point where we are building and developing a micro small medium scale enterprises sector industrial sector that provides cybersecurity solutions developed by West Africans first for West Africans and then for others this sector needs to be driven and powered by our youth those who are under fire 35 years of age ladies and gentlemen my request and my message to you is that this can be done we can do it and we can do it together thank you very much you


8 Replies to “Cybersecurity SME’s are the future | Abdul-Hakeem Ajijola | TEDxPortHarcourt”

  1. Lanre Oladejo says:

    Smart man that can see where the future is going. Hope the youths align accordingly.

  2. GhostLocalHost says:

    DDOS, not DOS.

  3. Ernesto Sun says:

    Great talk! One of the best contributions to Hands Down Digital Ethics that I have found so far! Yes, SMEs may profit from regional challanges in a global context. Viva West Africa!

  4. Gorgon Don says:


  5. Matthew Trevor Hutchings says:

    would love to be able to view the slides if they are uploaded anywhere

  6. Tural Mammadov says:

    Thank you for a nice presentation Mr.Abdul-Hakeem Ajijola

  7. Ifedayo Oladapo says:

    So let it be done

  8. Onyemobi Desta Anyiwo says:

    Very very on point presentation

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