African Development Bank awards 1 Billion CFA francs grant to facilitate financial inclusion and strengthen cybersecurity in Africa

March 08, 2021 | by: David Kodjani

The African Cybersecurity Resource Center (ACRC) project has just received a grant of 1 billion CFA francs for its launch from the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB).

This grant was made to facilitate financial inclusion in order to fight cybercrime across Africa and to strengthen the resilience of digital financial ecosystems.

To accelerate digital financial inclusion across Africa and ensure that an additional 332 million Africans (60% of whom are women) have access to the formal financial system, the Pan-African body for Facilitating Digital Financial Inclusion in Africa ( ADFI) has been implemented.

The ADFI is enthusiastically supporting this project according to its coordinator Sheila Okiro, as it is crucial for sustainable financial inclusion."We count on ACRC members and operational partners to help lay the groundwork for the systematic fight against growing cybersecurity problems and help build a sustainable model for the dissemination of these critical services across the continent. » She continued.

The grant, which will be disbursed through the Africa Digital Financial Inclusion Facility, will create an affordable shared platform to monitor cyber attacks against financial service providers and individual customers; deployment of individualized consulting services to enable organizations to strengthen their cybersecurity; enhancing the development of cybersecurity talent to ensure that the demand for African expertise can be met.

Reports shared by Quartz Africa revealed that in 2017, cybercrime cost African countries $3.5 billion. With digital transactions taking place quickly on mobile phones in Africa, many of which are insecure, vulnerability is expected to boost confidence in financial technology.

According to AFDB, the ACRC project will potentially benefit 250 million vulnerable clients and 2,000 to 3,000 financial institutions across Africa. As part of its gender promotion policy, ACRC will specifically target improving cybersecurity for 20 to 25 million women in five years, and will aim to employ a workforce of at least 39% of women. The African Cybersecurity Resource Center (ACRC) will be headquartered in Dakar, Senegal, and sub-regional resource centers will be established in West and East Africa.

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