Hon Minister OF ICT Postal and Courier Services

Ladies and Gentlemen; let me also bring to you attention that there has never been more need to discuss cyber-security related issues than the present day due to changes in modus operand of cyber criminals. The 21st century has seen cyber-crimes becoming the hot spot for cyber-security discussions and other online fraudulent activities because of its negative impacts on online business and users. The TWO most important realities of cyber-space in the 21stcentury are that (1) online business is NO LONGER SECURE and (2) online users are NO LONGER SAFE. Many sectors of economy and personnel (both high and low profile) have become lucrative targets forcyber-criminals.


Likewise, cyber-attacks threaten our economy. They can undermine our strategic and competitive advantages and cost our economy millions of dollars each year. The Second Republic, under the leadership of His Excellency, President E. D. Mnangagwa takes the protection of our businesses and economy from this growing threat seriously. Businesses, both big and small, need to accept that cyber-crime poses an enormous and immediate risk to their bottom line. 
Therefore, a discussion about cybersecurity needs to happen across businesses, from boardrooms to the front desk; hence the reason why I am glad to see you all here today. Ladies and Gentlemen, the recent publications on social networking statistics on statcounter.com indicate that most Zimbabweans use Social Media platforms in their day to day activities. I believe these social media users would include children and young people at large. This new medium of social networking poses additional risks and threats to our children as their identities and privacies are being liable to be intruded in the cyber-space. Children are exposing themselves by posting their personal IDs, emotions, location and images on the social networking platforms. All this information could be taken advantage of by unscrupulous people who are targeting these young children. Unknowingly children can become the target and victims of pornography, kidnapping, rape, deception, drug mules, or even children trafficking by adult predators or cybercriminals. This is a worrying trend and is indeed a rising concern amongst the parents and teachers. We, therefore, have an obligation to protect our children. Online safety for children must be given priority; hence it is one of the key themes for this meeting. Ladies and Gentlemen, while we have worked hard to build a productive and competitive economy, cyberattacks can bring it to a screaming halt or worse, bring it crashing down. There is no point in building a brand new house to then leave the front door unlocked.


Our focus on cyber-security as Government is about safeguarding Zimbabwe’s economy and our citizens and making sure we remain open for business and ensuring Zimbabweans are safe online. Currently, my Ministry is working on a CYBER-SECURITY BILL which I believe is fundamental in securing trust and confidence in the cyber-space. This initiative is also important for Zimbabwe’s international reputation as a safe place to do business. I believe this workshop will provide a valuable avenue for the policy-makers, regulators, industry leaders, academia, law enforcement as well as the Civil society to discuss, share and exchange their views and experiences on addressing the key policies and strategies for safeguarding our nation. I hope to see a strong collaboration between all the stakeholders involved today and come up with their own key initiatives, programs and measures to tackle these online risks. I wish the participants all the best and hope this meeting will bear fruitful discussions in moving Cyber-security forward to the next level. With these remarks I declare this National Cyber Security Awareness Month

 

OFFICIALLY OPEN.
I THANK YOU

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Image Title: 
Hon Minister
Image Name: 
Hon K Kazembe

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