ECOWAS calls for effective legislation in war against cybercrime

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The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has called for effective legislation in the fight against cyber crime in the sub-region.

The call was made at the ongoing ECOWAS Interparliamentary Forum on ICT sessions under the theme: “Role of the Parliamentarian in the fight against cybercrime in the ECOWAS space,” from 5-7 November, 2020 in Niamey, Niger Republic.

The ECOWAS Interparliamentary forum on ICT said it recognized that cybercrime in its various forms, especially those that are technology-assisted pose a serious threat to the economies, industry, commerce, banking and financial services sectors and their operations within the ECOWAS region.

The forum noted that cybercrime has become a serious economic threat to negatively impact national and subregional economic development, intra-regional and external/international trade.

It also has the potential to disrupt and undermine the integrity and security of internal, intra-regional and external financial transactions, payment and settlement systems as well as provision of various financial services.

On the role of Parliamentarians, one of the panelists, Mrs. Mary Uduma, President, MAG FGI Afrique Abuja, Nigeria, instructed lawmakers within the subregion to, propose the development and enactment of appropriate national and subregional cybersecurity policies and implement strategies directed at addressing economic related and financial services cybercrime activities.

“Parliamentarians must recognize the subregional, global and far-reaching nature of the legal, legislative, technological, economic, financial and institutional challenges and threats posed by the emergence and rise of cybercrime. In the same light, they have to take into account the role of all key stakeholders and existing initiatives, within a frame-work of regional cooperation in West Africa and beyond.”

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