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UK pledges £22 million to support cyber capacity building in vulnerable countries

Thursday May 13th, 2021

The Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab, has announced £22 million of new investment to build cyber security resilience in developing countries and globally, particularly in Africa and the Indo-Pacific.

As part of this the UK, jointly with INTERPOL, is setting up a new cyber operations hub in Africa working across Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Rwanda to support joint operations against cyber crime.

Speaking at the National Cyber Security Centre’s CYBERUK conference he outlined the UK’s vision of being a leading responsible cyber power, working with partners to shape cyberspace according to our values.

The £22 million investment in cyber capacity building will target countries in Africa, the Commonwealth and Indo-Pacific, transforming their resilience by helping build national emergency response teams and promoting future leadership by funding new Chevening scholarships.

The new Interpol desk will work across Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Rwanda, creating a regional strategy to support joint operations against cybercrime, and strengthen African states’ capability to combat the crime and those behind it. With some of the fastest growing economies in the world, Africa has become a target for opportune cybercriminals.

By creating a central coordination desk within INTERPOL that law enforcement across Africa can use, the UK hopes to improve collaboration across borders to advance intelligence sharing, and ultimately stop the perpetrators of cybercrime in Africa.

In his speech, the Foreign Secretary said:

“We are working with like-minded partners, to make sure that the international order that governs cyber is fit for purpose.

Our aim should be to create a cyberspace that is free, open, peaceful and secure, and which benefits all countries and all people.

We want to see international law respected in cyberspace, just as we would anywhere else. And we need to show how the rules apply to these changes in technology, the changes in threats, and the systemic attempts to render the internet a lawless space.”

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