By Maxwell Nkansah
Ghana has been ranked 3rd, with a score of 86.69% in the Global Cyber security Index of the International Telecommunication Union.
According to the 2020 Global Cyber security Index report of the ITU, Ghana’s current score on the metric shows major progress from the previous ratings in 2017 and 2018 of 32.6% and 43.7% respectively.
Ghana’s 3rd place ranking in Africa is also a major leap from the 10th and 11th places attained in the previous ratings and projects Ghana among the best in the region and globally.
Among the interventions meriting this rating include the revision of the National Cyber security Policy and Strategy to provide a national direction and implementation plan for Ghana’s cyber security development; the passage of the Cyber security Act, 2020 (Act 1038) to provide a legal basis for its cyber security development; the institutionalization of cyber security to foster domestic cooperation and collaboration; and the ratification of relevant cybercrime/cyber security international conventions and treaties such as the Convention on Cybercrime also known as the Budapest Convention and African Union Convention on Cyber Security & Personal Data Protection also known as the Malabo conventions ECOWAS’ Regional Cyber security Cybercrime Strategy and the Regional Critical Information Infrastructure (CII) Protection Policy to strengthen Ghana’s international response in fighting cybercrime and improve on cyber security.
Other key factors contributing to Ghana’s rating include the development of Ghana’s Computer Emergency Response Team ecosystem, the country’s persistence in capacity building and awareness creation, notably the institutionalization of the annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) in October as a result of the launch of the National Cyber security Awareness Programmed (safer Digital Ghana). Other areas that the country has shown commitment in the fight against cybercrime is the deployment of the Cybercrime/Cyber security Incident Reporting Points of Contact to enable individuals and organizations report cyber-related incidents with ease and to receive advisories. The achievement according to the National Cyber Security Centre is proof of the government’s commitment to developing the country’s cyberspace to be secure and resilient for a sustained digital transformation. It added that this commitment is evidenced by the efforts of the government through the Ministry of Communications and Digitalization working with the members of the National Cyber Security Inter-Ministerial Advisory Council and the National Cyber Security Technical Working Group in the implementation of critical interventions in the country’s cyber security ecosystem.
Government through the Ministry of Communications and Digitalization are also working closely with other relevant Ministries, agencies, international partners and private sector stakeholders remain committed in its efforts to ensure that the various digitalization interventions rolled out are secured. Given this, the National Cyber Security Centre is expected to transition into the Cyber Security Authority in the coming weeks per Section 2 of the Cyber security Act, 2020 (Act 1038), to regulate cyber security activities in the country and to further lead Ghana’s cyber security development.
Since the launch of the GCI in 2015, it has been a trusted reference, measuring countries’ commitment to cyber security and raising awareness of its importance.
The level of each country’s development or engagement is assessed along the five strategic pillars of the Union’s Global Cyber security Agenda that is Legal Measures, Technical Measures, Organizational Measures, Capacity Building, and International Cooperation. This is then aggregated into an overall score.