2021 Digital Transformation and Application Security Posture in West and Central Africa

Africa continues to see huge growth in digitization and the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to solve many of the challenges plaguing the continent. We’ve noticed rapid and ongoing growth in digitization in areas such as banking, farming, government, education and health. At the same time, we’ve noticed a significant rise in cyber-related attacks and crime on the continent. The fast growth of digital and the increased dependency in technology comes along with cyber risks. The implication of these cyber risks/threats in our day to day life is not always well perceived by all parties including companies and end users. In addition, very little data exists for both policy makers and the private sector to use in decision making, which is why we undertook this study. Undertaking the study is also consistent with the objectives of GEFONA DIGITAL FOUNDATION. which are (1) building a database of the state of cybersecurity in Africa (2) providing information to help in decision making and (3) to trigger revision of policies based on in country facts. After a successful study of the State of Application Security in Cameroon¹ which saw the production of a working report and the release of certain stylized facts regarding the state of applications in Cameroon, we thus considered the extension of this study to the wider immediate region. After discussions with some private sector players, we decided to extend the study to 5 countries (Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Senegal and Ivory Coast) in West and Central Africa.