The Parliament of Ghana has passed the Cybersecurity Act 2020 to establish a regulatory framework for the development of Ghana’s cybersecurity.
The Act establishes the Cyber Security Authority, protects the critical information infrastructure of the country, regulates cybersecurity activities, provides for the protection of children on the internet and develops Ghana’s cybersecurity ecosystem.
The Cybersecurity Act 2020 is also aimed at positioning Ghana to prevent, manage and respond to cybersecurity incidents in view of the digital transformation agenda.
The Act also addresses offences against children and the general public online as such acts are currently increasing due to the utilization of digital services and platforms especially in this era of COVID-19.
Furthermore, the Cybersecurity Act 2020 empowers security and law enforcement agencies to combat cybercrime and makes provision for dedicated sources of funding for the Cyber Security Authority and its activities.
In recent times, the internet has become a critical infrastructure and facilitator of engagements for individual users, businesses, and governments across the globe.
According to the Ministry of Communications, the increasing reliance on the internet and Information Communication Technology has led to increased cybersecurity incidents such as ransomware, cyber theft, banking fraud, cyber espionage and other cyber-attacks targeted at critical information infrastructure in Ghana.
The Ministry has also revealed that these cybersecurity incidents have affected critical sectors of the country including energy, telecommunications, banking and finance and have caused disruptions in the delivery of essential services.
In checking these cybersecurity incidents which can undermine the security and economy of the country, the Government of Ghana through the Ministry of Communications has implemented a number of initiatives to improve Ghana’s cybersecurity development.
The initiatives include the revision of Ghana’s National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy, the establishment of the National Cyber Security Centre, the launch of the Safer Digital Ghana campaign, the launch of Cybercrime and Cybersecurity Incident Reporting Points of Contact.
Others include the establishment of the Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERT) at the National Communications Authority (NCA) and the Security Operations Centres at both the Bank of Ghana and the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) as well as capacity building on cybercrime for the criminal justice sector.
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