Benjamin Babine, Abuja
Cybercrime in Nigeria, over the years, has grown to become a huge cancer plaguing not just its victims but also the entire country’s image before the international community. Making it worse, the recent arrest of Ramon Abbas, popularly known as Hushpuppi, by the Dubai Police for scamming a total of N160 billion further plunged the image of Nigeria into shame as it attracted much more negative publicity for the country. However, amid all the negatives that cybercrime has brought, a turnaround has occured in recent times as the fight against cybercrime has helped in creating several thousands of jobs for young technology experts.
According to the director-general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, through the deployment of the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR), about 2,686 new jobs have been created in less than 24 months, with the aim of combating cybercrime and aiding reliable cybersecurity, and there has been an upsurge in the employment of technology experts.
Speaking about this, the NITDA boss urged youths with tech expertise to join in the fight against cybercrime, saying it is providing thousands of jobs for experts. He stressed that youths should not use their tech expertise for cyberscams rather but should leverage on the opportunities provided by the NDPR to make legitimate income.
“When it comes to cybersecurity, collaboration is the future. This is because cybersecurity is not something that one can do alone. It is something that requires information sharing. That sharing is very important because according to Cyber Security Ventures, by next year the cost of cybercrime to the world will be more that $6 trillion annually.
“Also next year, fighting cybercrime will create 3.5 million jobs worldwide. So, here in Nigeria, we are trying to strike the balance between curbing cybercrime itself and still creating and sustaining those jobs. This is an opportunity for our talented youths to use their cyber expertise to fight cybercrime. So, youths should use their cyber expertise to make legitimate money rather than go into cyber criminality.
“We have started by creating the Nigerian Data Protection Regulation and, based on the NDPR report launched recently, we have licensed 70 data protection compliance organizations, which has created 2,686 direct jobs for youths who have ICT expertise. So, these are the directions that our youths should be directing their expertise towards,” he said.
As ironic as the situation is, the prospects show that even more jobs will be created in the fight against cybercrime and, in fact, it seems like the more there’s cybercrime, the more job creation will increase.