Experts have charged ICT journalists on sustained self-improvement and the need to shift from passive to active reporting at a one-day cybersecurity awareness training organized by Cybersafe Foundation in Lagos.
According to Chief Visionary Officer at Digital Encode, Dr Obadare Peter Adewale, there is need for ICT journalists to embark on sustained self-improvement in order to effectively armed themselves with required knowledge necessary to breakdown news to the masses especially in Cybersecurity.
The awareness campaign was organized Friday for members of the Nigeria Information Technology Reporter Association (NITRA), the Non-Governmental Organization on a mission to facilitate pockets of changes that ensure a safer internet for everyone with digital access in Africa, tagged; #NoGoFallMaga.
According to him lack of understanding of the terms and inability to raise questions often lead to passive reporting as against active one where journalist should lead the way and shape the narratives.
“I see some you here pass press releases for companies that just want to sell market.”
Obadare, who is also a Board member at CyberSafe Foundation noted that Journalists need to acquire key competence including cognitive competence by having theoretical knowledge; functional competence by having the practical skills and social competence by having behavioral and good attitude.
He drew attention to top 26 cybersecurity journalists in the world who cannot be ignored as living examples for Nigerian ICT media practitioners to improve themselves.
On her part, Mrs Favour Femi- Oyewole, Group Chief Information Security Officer, Access Bank, Abumere Igboa, Chief Information Security Officer, Stanbic IBTC, Dr Obadare Peter Adewale, Chief Visionary Officer and Co-Founder at Digital Encode, Confidence Staveley, Cybersafe Foundation and Bharat Soni, Chief Information and Security officer at GTB Limited
Also speaking, Group Chief Information Security Officer, Access Bank, Mrs Favour Femi- Oyewole said cyber-attacks would be the next post-Covid pandemic, adding that Journalist must step up their games in their ability to be a sources of reliable reporting.
According to her journalists need to check their ability to position themselves as regards their capacity to be a source of trusted information to assist the masses and organizations in this time of recurrent cyber-attacks and threat.
According to her the most important and first level of shield and line of defense against cyber-attacks is the human beings who should ensure that they do not open their systems and media platforms for vulnerable.
Bharat Soni, who listed the most recent cyber security breaches to include Twitter compromise 2020, Colonial Ransom ware Attack 2021 and Cyber Breach of an Undisclosed Nigerian Bank 2021, said organisations should work to mitigate cyber security challenges such as insider fraud, business email compromises, ransom ware and phishing.
According to him Cyber security threats and attacks have become rampant due to technology changes, social economic factors and inadequate criminal justice, adding social media pose a challenge to reporting cyber incidents, as many people do not check the authenticity of news posted on SM.
Igboa stated that although “we are highly regulated we still need to know how to protect ourselves”, while Adewole enjoined IT journalists to adequately equip themselves with knowledge of trends in the cybersecurity ecosystem so they could help inform the public more accurate and active.
Delivery her training manure, the Founder of Cybersafe Foundation, Mrs. Confidence Staveley, argued that cybersecurity attacks are mainly driven by emotions, desire, fear, greed, urgency, panic, excitement, trust and curiosity.
She noted that what cybercriminals mostly want is identity, money, sensitive information and online account. Thus, they use all tactics to deceive people.