Africa Has The Fastest Growth Rates In Internet Penetration Worldwide: AU

The African continent is exhibiting one of the fastest growth rates in Internet penetration worldwide with digital connectivity almost tripling in the last five years, the African Union revealed on Tuesday.

The pan-African bloc AU, organising the first African forum on cyber-crime from October 16 to 18 in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa, however warned the increasing threats that emanate with the continuous development of information and communication technologies towards more sophisticated services and applications.

According to the AU, as Africa witnessed fastest growth in internet penetration during the past few years, governments and private sector entities in the continent have been experiencing an equally increasing trend of cyber-attacks.

The First African forum on cyber-crime is expected to focus on cyber-crime policies and national legislations, with respect to regional and international standards and relevant implementation practices.

Large-scale theft of personal data, computer intrusions, bullying, harassment and other forms of cyber violence, sexual violence against children online, are said to be among the major human rights abuses that are pervasive in the continent in recent days, it was noted.

Hate speech, xenophobia and racism on line are also indicated as contributing factors behind radicalisation and violent extremism in Africa.

According to the AU, the forum would play an important role in improving the effectiveness and exchange of information regarding common challenges and tasks across the continent. – Xinhua

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