Digital revolution should take a “proportional approach” to regulate artificial intelligence – Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google

As the EU puts the digital revolution at the heart of policymaking it should take a “proportional approach” to regulate artificial intelligence, Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google said Monday.

Pichai, also the boss of Google’s parent company Alphabet, argued before an audience at a Brussels think tank, Bruegel, that companies like his own — an internet behemoth valued at $1 trillion — need to be given a say as governments formulate AI regulatory policy.

“All of us have to do this together,” he said. “I think going it alone won’t work for anyone.”

His pitch comes at an important time. Europe is intent on forging a digital strategy able to compete with the US and China, both of which are locked in trade and technology tussles that have ramifications for industries and consumers around the world.

AI is, along with 5G networks, seen as an area where developments and applications risk outpacing regulatory measures unless authorities act swiftly.

In a month’s time, the European Commission is due to present its proposals on how it wants to tackle AI regulation across the EU.

Pichai urged “a proportionate approach, balancing potential harms with social opportunities”.

“There is no question in my mind that artificial intelligence needs to be regulated,” he said while stressing that Google wants “to offer our expertise, experience, and tools as we grapple with the inevitable tensions and trade-offs”.

Later Monday, the Alphabet boss was to meet with two European Commission vice presidents with powerful roles in deciding AI policy: Frans Timmermans, spearheading the EU’s fight against climate change, and Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition rules and forging “a Europe fit for the digital age”.

In parallel with the EU’s efforts, the US is also studying what regulations are needed to address AI, which is predicted to have disruptive effects on society, especially in terms of jobs, and in determining economic prosperity.

Pichai emphasised that Google had adopted an ethical approach to developing AI.

He said the company was not offering facial-recognition products for the time being because — as exemplified by China’s deployment of it as a public surveillance tool — it is one of the “higher-risk applications” that governments should look at as a priority.

Source :https://guardian.ng/news/google-chief-urges-proportionate-ai-regulation/

Nigeria Open Banking

Open Banking is an initiative that is aimed at addressing the challenge confronting many bank customers, especially those with multiple bank accounts. For these customers, they would have to visit the branches of each bank, or use their different mobile apps before they can access or use their money in any of the different bank accounts.

But Open Banking seeks to addresses this challenge by creating an arrangement that gives the customer the opportunity to share the details in different financial institutions with approved third parties, hence making it possible to access and utilise those details through third party apps. In a sense, the approved third party harmonises these accounts and create a single app that enables transactions in all of the accounts.

Under the Open Banking scheme, financial institutions open up their Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), to allow third parties to access financial information needed to develop the new apps and services.

This provides account holders greater financial transparency options.APIs are a set of codes and protocols that decide how different software components should interact. They essentially allow different applications to communicate with one another.

According to PwC Nigeria, “Open Banking means that no matter how many accounts and financial products a customer has, they can be viewed and managed from a centralised location. Open Banking lets customers have increased control over their data, while supporting the innovation everyone yearns to see more of”.But for the Committee of E-Business Heads, (CeBIH), Open Banking has emerged a critical factor in its quest to boost electronic payment (e-payment) growth through collaboration and innovation.

CeBIH comprises of the upper echelon of electronic business industry practitioners in all banks, with the objective of promoting e-banking services in line with global best practices, while driving adoption through right policies, standards, technologies and public awareness.“As industry practitioners, we have identified digital partnerships and open architecture as a major recipe for accelerating growth in payments”, CeBIH Chairman, Stanley Jacob, said.He stressed that the group believes that with Open Banking, the industry will “merge to surge”, there will be free flow of data following best practices and the cost-to-serve will be considerably lowered for the customer.

“We are working closely with the Trustees of Open Banking Nigeria. We are also advocating that the regulators continue to create an enabling environment for this to thrive. The overall objective is to create more value around the payment lifestyle of the customer and build an ecosystem driven by a healthy competition”, he added.

In line with this mission to drive Open Banking in Nigeria, the recently concluded CeBIH yearly retreat, with the theme: “Payment 2020plus: The Next Frontiers of Payments”, featured a session on Open Banking, which discussed the prospects and requirements of the scheme in Nigeria, as well as benefits for customers and service providers in the e-payment ecosystem.

Empowering customer
Driving the global trends towards Open Banking is more about the way it empowers bank customers to get better deals and the accompanied opportunities for collaboration and innovation among industry players.The Chief Digital Officer, Sterling Bank, Olayinka Oni, while speaking at the CeBIH retreat, said: “Open Banking is a collaborative way in which you have to share your data. The sharing of the data is at the discretion of the customer not necessarily anybody else.

“So, the customer is the one saying I want to share my data with this particular person and I am able to enjoy whatever service that person is offering.“So, whether I bank with Bank A or Bank C, I want a situation where I am able to ask for all of my information that sits in these several banks and even match that data into a single point. The customer is really in control and it is basically ensuring that the customers can to control their destiny.

“Open Banking will drive new iteration of services, as well as enable all kind of faster payment and easy payment. Customers will then be able to provide their accounts data and make it fluid and available as required. It means I can share my personal data and basically use it to drive authentication services.”Speaking further, he said, with Open Banking customers will be able to communicate with the banks through Google, Alexa and other internet-based cognitive services.

Driving partnership
Open Banking, according to a Trustee of Open Technology, Ope Adeoye, will facilitate the partnership needed to drive innovation in the e-payment space, especially partnership between Fintechs and banks.“In trying to do partnership with banks, it is so hard to execute a partnership with Bank A and think you can do the same with Bank B equally easily. You probably have to go through a painful process from bank to bank.

“By the time you do that with 23 banks, it will probably take you four to five years to get your product or initiative to the market. The thinking then is that if such common standards existed, then innovation can move faster, and this pain is not just on the Fintech side, even the banks as well.

“As a bank you will like to partner with a vendor, and when you think of the fear of backing it internally, IT, operations, those things just slow you down as a bank.“So, my thinking is that if we have Open Banking in Nigeria as well, a lot of the innovations that we thought were not possible within the time that you have, you can now free your mind as an organisation to explore those things,” he explained at the retreat.

Speaking on benefits of Open Banking and its impact on financial inclusion, Oni of Sterling Bank said: “The customer’s needs are diverse and often times as banks we cannot create all of these solutions as it were but though Open Banking I can definitely serve my customers a lot more.

“For example, in UK, where every bank is expected to sign on to open banking, no matter where the need of the customer demand will come from, there would be somebody solving that problem in the market and because, maybe, I am Barclays Bank, and I have joined Open Banking, then my customers will be a lot more potentially satisfied.

“With Open Banking, banks would then be able to then explore market opportunities, which we may not have potentially exploited. This can truly help us extend ecosystem players potentially. We would actually increase the pie.“Right now, we are all fishing within this old over-banked customers, but I think if we really use this to drive our financial inclusion agenda, what will happen is that we would increase the pie as it were, and obviously all of us will be bigger. Ultimately it will drive revenue stream”

Nigeria Open Banking
A major barrier to achieving Open Banking in Nigeria is misconception about its meaning, especially among banks.Speaking on how Open Banking Nigeria (OBN) is addressing the challenge, Ope Adeoye, said: “While there is a misconception that Open Banking equals forcing everyone to open up and partner with anyone who come knocking down the door.

“We think we can define some standards, some trust-based rule that says every bank is independent, every bank is just connecting to a set of standards and every bank can chose who they partner with, rule under which they partner with those people and the commercial terms under which they partner with those people. This is so that whenever the regulation comes, it will be hard for such regulation to misconstrued.”

Also speaking in this regard, Oni said: “We have to do a lot of engagement. The OBN has been doing a lot of advocacy, and a lot of that, with partnerships with several other quarters including deposit money banks, will then only form the efficiency around some of these things.”

Global Trends
Open Banking started in United Kingdom in 2016, when the United Kingdom Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) directed the nine biggest UK banks to allow qualified third-party providers access to customer-permitted data.The directive came into effect on January 13, 2018, with implementation based on the use of standards and systems created by Open Banking Limited, a non-profit created especially for the task.

Presently there are 202 regulated providers, who are enrolled in Open Banking in the UK. Many of them provide financial apps that help manage finances and also consumer credit firms who use Open Banking to access account information for affordability checks and verification. Following the example of the UK, about 47 countries have also launched Open Banking initiatives, either through collaborative efforts or through legislation.These include Nigeria, where Open Banking Nigeria, a not-for-profit group was formed to drive the development and adoption of Open Banking standards in the country.

Source: https://guardian.ng/business-services/open-banking-cebihs-role-and-nigerias-e-payment-growth/

‘I’ve been bruised, dissed, bashed and even fired. Looking back, it was all worth it’

Excellence is defined by the ability and capacity to be great at what one does, Morayo Afolabi-Brown, a popular Nigerian television host is an exact replica of the word excellence in the electronic media industry, as she keeps her viewers glued to the screen each time she presents her breakfast show Your View on Television Continental (TVC). The brilliant TV host, who wears series of caps as Content Creator, efficient Project Manager, astute Media Practitioner and Media Consultant, among others, had lived in the United States for 10 years where she studied Political Science at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.

In this interview with Guardian Woman, Morayo takes us through the pros and cons in the media industry where she has spent over a decade, her zeal to advocate for the girl-child and women, gender equality and balancing, the need for more female representation in the political space, her work with Lagos State technical partners on an education reform initiative called EkoEXCEL and more.

Tell us about your career in the media industry?
I started my career in the media back in 2005. I worked for a PR Company called CMC Connect, where I served as a Client Service Manager. My core duty was to have a thorough understanding of each client’s products, services in order to provide proactive business solutions. I also provided marketing solutions for clients to ultimately drive sales and increase visibility in the market. Part of my landmark achievement was to coordinate crisis management and ensure quality execution of all events. I later moved on to CUE Media, a content development company. I served there as Head, Content and Development, and later became Senior Executive, Marketing and Research. I developed a script (The Room), which won the New Directions pitch for M-Net on May 4, 2007. I also worked as Producer on a consumer education TV production for MTN Director – Dotun Seweje. I developed a TV reality show concept – Make A Joyful Noise. Then I worked on United Bank for Africa (UBA), documentary as a Producer.

I was the Concept Originator of “Girlfriends” (TV drama series), and “Shop Easy” and “Changing Lives” (Talk Show).

I then moved to HiTV, Nigera’s first indigenous cable station provider. I first served there as Business Development Manager and later became Head of Content and Channels Acquisition. Some of my landmark achievements were an increased advertising revenue from 2- digit figure, to 3-digit in two years. I also increased sponsorship revenue from $1m to approximately $20million in two and a half years. I successfully managed a two-month live reality TV show called Koko Mansion. My job as Head of Content allowed me to purchase local and international channels for the company at the best rates.

At TVC, I was hired as Deputy Director of Programmes and my task was to mainly convert the channel from a “news focus station” to a modern entertainment channel. This, I did with an effective team of young Nigerians. Today, TVC is one of the Top 3 channels in the country.

Aside the media, have you worked in any other industry?
Hardly. I had a brief stint at City Express Bank after my NYSC, but that was about it.

You have lived in the United States for 10-years; that is a long time. Why didn’t you just take advantage of the said golden American opportunities to stay back like some would have done, rather than come back to base to start your career?
It wasn’t exactly 10years but close. I had promised my father that I would not stay behind like my brothers. I kept remembering the conversation I had with my dad, the late Aka-Bashorun Alao, when I promised to return after my studies. My only regret is that I did not file for citizenship before leaving. At least if I had done that, I wouldn’t have to still line up for visa at the US embassy.

Tell us about the popular breakfast show you anchor ‘Your View’? What is the concept of the show and whose original idea is the show- yours, or your producer’s?
Living in the US, I was there when “The View” started in America. I fell in love with it and decided to have a Nigerian version whenever I returned home. So ‘The View’ is my concept, but I must always give credit to our Senior Producer, Mr. Lukman Musa. He brought in the singular ingredient that makes ‘The View’ and our other shows stand out, but I won’t tell you that secret.

As the Deputy Director of Programmes at TVC, what are the ups and downs of the job?
Trust me, there were crazy days and months. I have been bruised, dissed, bashed and even fired at TVC, but looking back, it was all worth it. God ordained my working at TVC and I’m thankful for that. I had wanted to resign many times but God kept saying it wasn’t time. My boss and mentor, Mr. Lemi Olalemi kept encouraging me to stay. However, there were more ups than downs. I had the best team working with me as the Deputy Director of Programmes before I resigned. They made it so worthwhile. We built TVC Entertainment together and today we are all reaping the benefits.

Being in the talk showbiz, and considering how it’s almost impossible to take back what has been said, does that make you feel the need to be self-conscious while you’re at work?
Yes, very true! I try to be very careful. As a moderator, I don’t usually have enough practice in sharing my views constructively as the other ladies do on a daily basis, so when I’m passionate about something, the passion precedes my words and sometimes comes out muffled and wrong. So I have learnt to take it very easy and be clear on my position before speaking.

What have been the pains and gains? Has this job opened doors for you?
There have been lots of gains in the sense that people know you and somewhat trust your character. People tend to give you things and invite you to their circles. The pain is the attention people expect from me, and pressure from different corners.

How do you manage the fame that comes with being a celebrity?
Just staying grounded. I have serious values and I don’t compromise.

You’re very passionate about issues relating to women and the girl-child, what is the drive? Is it mainly because you’re a woman or because you feel women are undertreated as human in our society?
The desire to start the show started from trying to give women a voice. Back in the day, when you see talk shows, you see men being invited to share their thoughts on national issues. We have to change that narrative. Women have viewpoints and should be heard, and that is what the programme ‘Your View’ stands to show.

As an advocate for women, do you think women are well represented in Nigeria’s political space?
The society and it endless expectation from women is the only thing stopping us, and it is a big deal. Many of us will like to join politics but we often weigh that option with our commitment to family. The latter usually wins the contest of the mind. We need more representation. Women with grown-up kids should come out and be part of the change we desire.

What do you think women should do differently to better their stake in the society, especially here in Nigeria?
Speak, speak and speak. We have the highest number of votes counted in most elections. We are the deciding factor, therefore, we must be heard. Let’s keep talking and making our points in the various ways available so everyone sees that if you do not meet the needs of women, you cannot become a leader.

Sometime in 2018, there was a huge controversy on your take over the issue of girl-child molestation during your show. How did that make you feel?
Personally, I accept that I spoke carelessly and loosely. However, the point I was trying to get at was very valid. I wasn’t hurt because I knew no one was above mistakes but what was most painful was how an innocent good man, my husband, was portrayed. That hurt to the depth of my soul. I thank God that gave him strength to pull through it.

How supportive has your husband been with your career?
My husband is extremely supportive. He is my number one fan. He pushes me, nudges me and directs me.

You’re currently working with Lagos State technical partners on an education reform initiative ‘EkoEXCEL’, tell us about the project and what it aims to achieve?
Yes, EkoEXCEL project is a designed and funded initiative by Lagos State Government that will drive excellence in learning for about 500,000 pupils across 1,016 primary schools. It is an education reform programme for primary school teachers that will successfully train, support and motivate government teachers to succeed in their classrooms.

Any role models in the industry that motivated you, or that you look up to?
Oh wow, there are so many of them. From day-one till now, it was Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Adesuwa Onyenekewe and Ibukun Awosika. Today, I study a lot of women and one woman has been in my thoughts and mind as I move to the next level in my life and that is Chimamanda Adichie. I love her calm, peaceful but strong personality.

If you were not a TV gal, what else would you be doing?
Believe me, I will be a correct (sophisticated) housewife that has breakfast in London and dinner in Japan. I love the good life of limited workloads, but I’m willing to wait for God’s time.

Can you recall some of your best moments on the programme?
So many memories. Just last Christmas, we gave out N500,000 to members of the audience; that felt really good. Some lady needed additional money for a kidney surgery and some of that money came in handy. Another memory was when we interviewed Aisha Buhari. We were all nervous but that experience left a lasting impression on all of us.

How do you manage your fan base, they must be very huge.
I have a sibling that helps me whenever she is home from school. When she is gone, I seldom check my messages. However, I’m making efforts to get better at engaging my fans.

How about those social media bullies, how do you manage them too?
My sibling is the one that reads up comments and tells me what is happening. She even goes ahead to block some people whose bully is with contempt or hate. So I’m learning how to block negative energy on my page now.

What success nuggets do you have for young ladies looking up to you?
The most important prayer a young woman must pray very early in life is on “purpose”. God must reveal your assignment to you. Once you get that, stay in your lane. The breakthrough may tarry but stay in that lane. God will show up and when He does, the world will see it and celebrate you.

Where do you see Morayo in 10-years?
In 10-years, Morayo will be an International influencer, a role model and a social crusader. I’ll remain in my space and God will direct the next steps for me. I’m doing a lot of project management and consulting work. I think I’ll remain here for now.

You’re a woman with many caps, how do you strike a balance between your career and family?
Truth be told, it is not easy. I don’t want to sacrifice my relationship with my family for career success. So, I’ll continue to do my best to ensure no side suffers. However, the moment I feel time with my family is suffering, I reverse to status quo. Nothing is worth the love and attention my family needs from me.

At what point do you tell yourself to take a break from all the work and relax?
The moment my husband begins to make the “Dangote” kind of money, which he will by God’s special grace, I will drop it all and take a big break. I also look forward to when I hand over Your View to the next generation of women. At that time, I’ll sit back in my home, with a plate of cheese crackers and juice, to watch them.

Source: https://guardian.ng/guardian-woman/ive-been-bruised-dissed-bashed-and-even-fired-looking-back-it-was-all-worth-it/

Google joins the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Amazon as a $1 trillion company. 

Google on Thursday January 16, joined the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Amazon as a $1 trillion company.

 

The search engine company was able to record the milestone achievement after its parent company, Alphabet ended the day’s trading at $1,451.70 per share, up 0.87 percent.

 

With Thursday’s achievement, Google became the fourth S&P 500 component to top the lofty level. Business Insider reported that while Apple and Microsoft are still valued at more than $1 trillion, Amazon which was the second US firm to ever hit the $1 trillion level back in September 2018 has since fallen below the number.

 

This is the first time that three American companies are worth at least $1 trillion at the same time. The most valuable company on the planet is still oil giant Saudi Aramco, who went public last month at a valuation of $2 trillion and is currently worth around $1.8 trillion.

 

Alphabet’s record market valuation came after a historic change in leadership at the company. Recall that Sundar Pichai became the CEO of both Google and Alphabet after co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin announced that they would step back from the company which they founded in 1998.

Source: https://www.lindaikejisblog.com/2020/1/google-now-a-1-trillion-company-2.html

Winners of Three Crown Mum of the Year 2019

L-R: Mrs Omolara Banjoko, Marketing Manager, Three Crowns Milk, Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Kafayat Salami (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Chinwe Okoroafor (MOTY’19 Winner ), Mrs Omotayo Egberongbe, Junior Brand Manager,Three Crowns and Mr Akeem Audu, Brand Manager, Three Crowns at the Grand Finale of Three Crowns Mum Of Year 2019 campaign.

 

Three Crowns Milk, from the stables of FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria PLC last weekend, held the grand finale of Mum of the Year, where 3 mums won an all-expense-paid trip to Dubai and a year’s supply of Three Crowns products. The event which held at D’ Podium Event Centre, Ikeja featured comedian and compere, MC Bash, performances by A-list music artiste Reekado Banks and a panel of judges comprising Nollywood actresses, Adunni Ade, Belinda Effah and Fitness trainer, Bunmi George.

Mum of the year – an annual competition aimed at celebrating and rewarding Nigerian mothers for the important roles they play in their families and the society at large, had 5 finalists who were selected from a large pool of entries sent in from across the country in a bid to compete for the top 3 positions.

Having competed openly in fitness and witty tasks in the presence of the panel of judges, Mrs, Chinwe Okoroafor (Delta State), Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun (Lagos State) and Mrs. Kafayat Salami (Oyo State) emerged as top 3 winners; while the other finalists, Mrs. Wala May (Abuja) and Mrs. Peju Akinde (Ogun State) emerged as runners up; each, winning consolation prizes of Kitchen makeover and a range of Three Crowns Milk products worth N500,000.

One of the winners, Mrs. Chinwe Okoroafor praised Three Crowns Milk for paying special attention to health and particularly, the role of mothers.

In her words, “With the records which this brand holds, no one can be surprised at its increasing acceptance and patronage by people across all ages and across all areas in Nigeria. My family and I are for Three Crowns any day”; adding, “The transparency of this competition is very inspiring; the experience has been wonderful to me; and this outcome lifts my soul”. She promised to be an exemplary ambassador of Three Crowns Milk.

 

The Marketing Manager, Three Crowns Milk, Omolara Banjoko explained that the aim of the campaign is to reward and celebrate every mum for her support and care, and as the heart of the home. She stressed that the campaign is to ensure mums are well taken care of, having done a lot to care for their families at their own expense.

 

Banjoko further said: “Three Crowns supports families by providing high quality nutrition for mothers and by extension, their families. One of the key things that we have identified is that the foundation of any family is the mother and with them being the foundation, they need to stay fit and healthy which is what Three Crowns truly stands for.”

 

Three Crowns Mum of the Year campaign debuted in 2015 with Olamide Olaleye emerging as winner, followed by Nkechi Brayila who won in 2016; Oluwakemi Longe in 2017; while three mums (Adaobi Okonkwo, Pauline Pambolo and Jennifer OtoGod) were crowned winners in the 2018 edition.

 

About FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria

FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria PLC has been a necessary part of most Nigerian homes since 1954 through its iconic brand Peak Milk. Our Company is a multinational manufacturing company and an affiliate of Royal FrieslandCampina of The Netherlands, one of the largest dairy cooperative in the world. Over the years, FrieslandCampina WAMCO has maintained leadership of the Evaporated milk market with its Peak brand. Guided by an inspiring mission, Nourishing Nigeria with quality dairy nutrition, we are unwavering in the provision of quality nutritious milk products to Nigerians

 

Three Winner Emerge At Three Crowns Mum of The Year Competition

L-R: Mr. Lamidi Adekola, Operations Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO, Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun, MOTY’19 Winner, Mrs. Kafayat Salami, MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs .Chinwe Okoroafor, MOTY’19 Winner , Maureen Ifada, Channel Manager, Modern Trade, FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Mr. Ben Langat, Managing Director, Frieslandcampina, WAMCO at the Grand Finale of Three Crowns Mum Of Year 2019 campaign.

 

Three Winner Emerge At Three Crowns Mum of The Year Competition

L-R: Mr. Lamidi Adekola ,Operations Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO), Mrs. Omolara Banjoko (Marketing Manager, Three Crowns), Hon Funmi Olotu (SSA to Lagos State Governor on Lottery matters), Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Kafayat Salami (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Chinwe Okoroafor (MOTY’19 Winner), Mr. Ben Langat Managing Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Mr. Chris Wulff-Caesar ,Marketing Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO ,at the Grand Finale of Three Crowns Mum Of Year 2019 campaign.

 

Three Winner Emerge At Three Crowns Mum of The Year Competition

L-R: Mr. Lamidi Adekola, Operations Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO, Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun, MOTY’19 Winner, Mrs. Kafayat Salami, MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs .Chinwe Okoroafor, MOTY’19 Winner , Maureen Ifada, Channel Manager, Modern Trade, FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Mr. Ben Langat, Managing Director, Frieslandcampina, WAMCO at the Grand Finale of Three Crowns Mum Of Year 2019 campaign.

 

Three Winner Emerge At Three Crowns Mum of The Year Competition

L:R : Mr. Chris Wulff-Caesar, Marketing Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO, Mrs. Abigail Oluwasegun (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Kafayat Salami (MOTY’19 Winner), Mrs. Chinwe Okoroafor (MOTY’19 Winner) and Mr. Ben Langat Managing Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO at the Grand Finale of Three Crowns Mum Of Year 2019 campaign.

Source: https://www.lindaikejisblog.com/2019/12/three-winner-emerge-at-three-crowns-mum-of-the-year-competition-2.html

Cyber Security experts calls for more third-party awareness and trainings to mitigate the rising menace of cyberattacks

Cyber Security experts have called for more third-party awareness and trainings to mitigate the rising menace of cyberattacks, adding that third parties in a network system are usually overlooked and that has posed an entry point for new attacks.

According to them, Nigeria is known to be leading in terms of online fraud in Africa, with about $500 billion, which is expected to hit $2trillion by the year 2020.They added that with better configuration, services upscale in the value chain and data domiciliation, cyber attacks would be mitigated.

They made the call during the Cyber Security Workshop Themed: “DDoS Evolution – Staying Protected” organised by the Information Security Society of Africa-Nigeria (ISSAN) in collaboration with 21st Century Technologies Limited in Lagos.

According to research, Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks are getting 300 times bigger, 60 times longer, and five times more complex. These figures mean that attackers are engineering more complex attacks on a larger scale.

President of ISSAN, Dr. David Isiavwe, decried the worsening state of cyber security in the country and called for collaborations to boost the fight. He said: “For those who watch the cyber space closely, you will all agree that there is still a lot happening every day. New forms of attacks are being contrived and implemented by the bad guys and all they need is one successful attempt. We hear of all the various attacks both on individuals and companies alike. Indeed, even the cyber security gate keepers are not spared. And huge sums of money are at risk whenever there is a successful attack. Businesses must take steps to stay protected always.”

Isiavwe, who is also the Group Head Operations & Technology, Ecobank Nigeria Limited, further lamented the fact that everyone and every institution was susceptible to these attacks as social engineering attack is unrelenting.He said data based manipulation-insiders and outsiders is on the rise, attack on card data and card processing technology infrastructure via rogue IT infrastructure, spear phishing attack and combination of different methodologies were rampant.

The ISSAN President, therefore called on all stakeholders to be proactive, create customer awareness activities, continuous and automated monitoring of systems and infrastructure, employment of Artificial intelligence and Machine Learning as well as robotics and data analytics.

On the challenges of DDoS protection, DDoS Security expert, Nexusguard Ltd, Long Lee Shih, said the attack techniques continue to evolve and more difficult to detect, with the growing number of new and zero-day attacks.

According to him, in Q1 2018, there is a record breaking attack powered by massive amplification (Memcached attacks in 51,000 times), while Internet of Things (IoT)-botnet attacks has sky rocked in Q2 2018.

“Perpetrators employed a newly-adopted amplification attack technique called bit-and-piece in Q3 2018 to Q1-Q3 2019. Attacks are now launched towards a diverse pool of Internet Protocol (IP) addresses across hundreds of IP prefixes.

“Why legacy methods fail to address DDoS challenges is because firewall and IDS are not designed to mitigate DDoS attacks; it takes a long time to implement and requires expertise; high costs of purchasing hardware, installation and maintenance, and the extra manpower dedicated to keeping the equipment up and running,” he added.To mitigate this attack, he said the firm has partnered 21CTL to boost capacity into local regions, so that both international and in-country attack traffic can be managed simultaneously.

“It will also address data sovereignty concerns, minimise latency and maintain a good user experience. 21CTL will be the first 100 per cent guaranteed DNS service even against DDoS attacks,” he added.

Source: https://guardian.ng/business-services/stakeholders-fret-over-rising-ddos-as-losses-hit-over-500b/

Doing Business Report 2020

According to the World Bank “Doing Business Report 2020”, Nigeria moved up 15 places, to 131 on the ‘ ease of doing business ‘ index. This is some good news!

 

But then…

 

  1. How well can local brands compete with foreign businesses?
  2. Do local brands have the right systems, structures and processes to match up global brands in terms of : quality, market acceptance and durability?
  3. Can local brand compete with foreign brand in terms of: access to funding and markets?
  4. How can Nigeria’s recent initiative to join the AfCFTA benefit local businesses?

 

At DBC Biz-Fair 8.0, we shall be providing  answers to these questions and more.

 

DBC Biz-Fair is a market place for Daystar business people to showcase their goods and services, network with other business owners as well as learn from industry experts.

 

To register as an exhibitor, kindly  do so via http://dbf.daystarng.org/bizfair

 

Limited booths available.

 

See you there!

 

 

Seplat Petroleum to acquire London-listed Eland Oil & Gas

Seplat is to accumulate London-listed Eland Oil & Gas for £382 million ($486,163,760.00) in an exceedingly bid to scale the business and grow in Federal Republic of Nigeria, in keeping with the boards of the businesses.

The acquisition is to be accomplished by means that of a theme of arrangement below half twenty six of the businesses Act.

Seplat can pay 166 pence per share in money for Eland, or a premium of twenty 8.5 % to Monday’s terms. Shares in Eland climbed 28 % in early commercialism on Tuesday.

Eland’s board has backed the supply, as have its 3 largest shareholders, who have given irrevocable commitments for concerning 60% of the shares within the company.

The acquisition are going to be supported through a mixture of existing money and a brand new loan facility.

According to the businesses, the deal can offer the combined business bigger scale in production and reserves, with the combined boring set to extend to 38,000 barrels of oil per day (boepd) for the enlarged cluster.

Factoring in Seplat’s gas production, total production is predicted to grow to 64,000 boepd.

In interim results discharged in Sept, Eland, supported in 2009, rumored an operative profit of $40 million on record revenues of $106 million, up from $67.4 million within the previous year.

Seplat presently provides a couple of third of Nigeria’s power generation gas.

UK government awards £86.6m contracts to ferry companies to transport medicines in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

The government has awarded £86.6m of contracts to ferry firms to move medicines within the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Brittany Ferries, DFDS, P&O and Stena Line are going to be able to deliver those provides from thirty one October, it said.

The contracts are aimed toward ensuring deliveries of important product continue, if the united kingdom leaves the EU while not a deal.

The government was criticised earlier this year after subsidizing a transport contract to an organization with no ferries.

The contracts are going to be in situ for 6 months that the government is ready for various Brexit eventualities, a interpreter aforesaid.

Should the contracts have to be compelled to be off, the united kingdom pays the corporations £11.52m. the united kingdom paid £51m to cancel no-deal ferry contracts once the Brexit point extension at the top of March.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “The GB is preparing to go away the EU on the thirty one October and, like every smart government, we are getting ready for all outcomes.

“Our decisive action suggests that freight operators are going to be prepared and waiting to move very important medicines into the country from the instant we leave.”

The ferries run between Teesport, Hull, Killingholme, Felixstowe, Harwich, Tilbury, Portsmouth and Poole within the GB and port, Caen, Le Havre, Zeebrugge, Hook of Holland, Rotterdam, Europort, and Vlaardingen.

Earlier this week, the govt established a customs work support unit for medical product suppliers to assist with obtaining across borders within the event of a no-deal Brexit.

The extra capability can facilitate medicine corporations arrange for a no-deal Brexit, the Association of country Pharmaceutical trade aforesaid.

“This capability is a vital part of our members’ preparations,” aforesaid the trade body’s chief government microphone Thompson.

“Stockpiles also are in situ, and a few firms have already sourced their own various ferry routes.”

Earlier this week Dame Sally Davies warned that patients might die should there be medical provides shortages.

In February the govt scrapped a ferry contract with mobile Freight, that had no ships, once Irish company backing the deal force out.

Deutsche Bank buys five percent stake in German Financial technology

Deutsche Bank bought a five percent stake in German Financial technology start-up Deposit Solutions, valuing the firm at north of one billion euros ($1.1. billion).

The deal makes Deposit Solutions Germany’s second-largest fintech unicorn — a private business that’s value $1 billion or additional — in line with in public accessible knowledge. Deutsche didn’t disclose what quantity cash it had invested into the firm.

It comes simply months when the bank declared an enormous restructuring program that may see eighteen, thousand folks set off, because it scales back on its investment banking operations and appears to boost profitableness. It additionally follows the collapse of the lender’s merger talks with domestic rival Commerzbank.

Deposit Solutions’ code lets third-party lenders that provide savings product plug into retail banks’ platforms, a part of a broader trend within the monetary services business referred to as open banking. The firm says the advantage of this is often that it lets retail banks that don’t sell savings product supply them to customers, usually at higher interest rates.

Apart from Deutsche, the firm counts Peter Thiel’s venture fund Valar Ventures and personal equity firm Vitruvian Partners as investors. Deposit Solutions aforesaid Deutsche has been one among the company’s customers since 2017, whereas alternative purchasers embrace Germany’s MunchenerHyp, British bank shut Brothers and therefore the fintech firm Atom.

The deal signals growing interest from banking giants within the fintech house, with alternative lenders like HSBC and syndicalist Sachs additionally tilling money into similar suppliers. It might even be seen as taking advantage of open banking rules from the EU, that authorize third parties to access bank customers’ knowledge and initiate payments on their behalf.