MTN business seeks to grow market on IT security

MTN billboard
MTN billboard in Lagos, Nigeria. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Pan-Africa tech firm MTN Business is seeking to grow its market niche by introducing an IT security management product targeting Kenyan companies.

The firm’s senior manager and solutions architect John Muraya said companies enrolling for the Managed Security-as-a-service(MSSP) product will have an all-round IT security where MTN will take over IT Security roles leaving companies to fully concentrate on their core tasks.

“One of the main headaches today for IT security teams is keeping up with the ever increasing cyber threats and their level of sophistication. Organisations need a more automated, ever-green threat detection and remedy mechanism that is neither complicated nor involves heavy capital investments,” he said.

It will be available to multinationals, small and medium enterprises on a fully managed pay-per-use model.

Increased entrenchment of IT systems in company operations has saved companies millions of shillings but exposed them to the risk of customer data threat, funds loss as well as disruption of operations.


Some sacco societies have also experienced loss of funds from their customer accounts raising fears on security of IT platforms’ use in commercial operations.

Last January, the National Cybersecurity Centre (NCC) detected over 3.8 million cyber threats in the first quarter of 2018-2019, confirming fears that Kenya was at a high risk of online attacks.

Communications Authority of Kenya’s latest report on threats showed an increase of 11.76 percent from the last quarter where 3.4 million threats were detected.

Use of IT platforms continues to grow as a fast rate as competition for tech-savvy clients who spend most times online via their smartphones reaches feverpitch with more companies adopting use of IT in reducing costs for their internal processes.

“IT security has outgrown in-house teams and the future of survival belongs to bold enterprises that will partner with MSSPs to secure their enterprises,” said Network Engineer in-charge of security Duncan Omani who added that hackers also operate round the clock in search of unmanned IT systems.

Managing Director Festus Kiragu said IT security requires fulltime surveillance where IT security teams keep tabs of developments in cyber-security which was an uphill task for individual companies.

The CA attributed the increased threats to enhanced cyber threat detection capabilities through deployment of additional sensors and increased resources towards cyber threat analysis.

“The cyber threats detected varied from denial-of-service (DoS) including botnet and brute-force attacks that led to denial of computer services and illegal access to computer systems; online impersonation via social media accounts and domain names; website attacks including defacement; malware including phishing attacks; online abuse including online fraud, hate speech, incitement to violence and fake news; and systems misconfiguration,” says the CA report.

The 6,384 cases which the NCC determined to be critical and escalated for action were 2.4 times those recorded in the previous quarter.