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Saccos warned on the growth of cybercrime

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Sacco’s have been warned on the need to strengthen their cyber defenses as the cybercrime continues to pose a threat to member’s personal information, deposits, and transactions.

 
Speaking at the launch of Shoppers Sacco in Nairobi, Department of Co-operatives Principal Secretary Ali Noor Hassan, asked Sacco’s to invest more in securing their systems. “Invest in tools and technology that will protect deposits because cybercrime is on the rise. Keep on with innovation and research,” Mr. Hassan said.

 
According to global financial consulting firm Deloitte, more criminals are taking advantage of the increased internet connectivity to perpetrate cyber crimes against financial institutions. This coupled with lax security measures deployed by major institutions and dishonest employees has put most institutions in jeopardy.

 
Estimates show that users and businesses in Kenya lost about Ksh.18billion in 2016. According to Deloitte, the figures may grow by about 30% this year to Ksh.23billion. Cheque and internal fraud are the major risks that banks are grappling with in Kenya.

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“We see a lot of collusion with the IT guys who are able to delete logs after withdrawing customer’s money, and it may take time for banks to capture the fraud that has happened,” said John Kiptum, NetGuardina IT Risk, and Internal Control Consultant.

Mobile banking fraud is also on the increase due to weak controls by the end users. This includes customers disclosing their banking details to fraudsters who take the opportunity to swindle money from them. Criminals are also taking to arming payment devices with card skimmers which record your details and allows fraudsters to clone your card and withdraw cash.

The warning comes after an international cybercrime syndicate was arrested after gaining access to Kenya Revenue authority, a few unnamed banks, a parastatal and a supermarket chain. They are said to have siphoned hundreds of millions of shillings.

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Melissa Daniels
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