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NCC Identifies, Warns On Two Cyber Consumer Attacks

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The Nigerian Communications Commission’s Cyber Security Incident Response Team (NCC-CSIRT) has independently identified two cyber vulnerabilities consumers are easily exposed to.
CSIRT, in its first-ever security advisories, less than three months after its creation, identified the two cyber-attacks targeting consumers and also proffered solutions that can help telecom consumers from falling victim to the two cyber vulnerabilities.
The first, described as Juice Jacking, can gain access into consumers’ devices when charging mobile phones at public charging stations, and applies to all mobile phones.
The other is a Facebook for Android Friend Acceptance Vulnerability, which targets only Android Operating System.
According to CSIRT security Advisory 0001 released on January 26, 2022, with Juice Jacking, attackers have found a new way to gain unauthorized entry into unsuspecting mobile phone users devices when they charge their mobile phones at public charging stations.
Many public spaces: restaurants, malls and even in the public trains do offer complementary services to their customers in a bid to enhance customer services, one of which is providing charging ports or sockets.
However, an attacker can leverage this courtesy to load a payload in the charging station or on the cables they would leave plugged in at the stations.
Once unsuspecting persons plug their phones at the charging station or the cable left by the attacker, the payload is automatically downloaded on the victims’ phone.
This payload then gives the attacker remote access to the mobile phone, allowing them to monitor data transmitted as text, or audio using the microphone.
The attacker can even watch the victim in real time if the victims’ camera is not covered. The attacker is also given full access to the gallery and also to the phone’s Global Positioning System (GPS) location.
When an attacker gains access to a user’s Mobile phone, he gets remote access to the user’s phone which leads to breach in confidentiality, Violation of Data Integrity and bypass of Authentication Mechanisms.
Symptoms of attack may include sudden spike in battery consumption, device operating slower than usual, apps taking a long time to load, and when they load they crash frequently and cause abnormal data usage.
The NCC-CSIRT, however, proffered solutions to this attack to include using ‘charging only USB cable’, to avoid Universal Serial Bus (USB) data connection; using one’s AC charging adaptor in public space; and not granting trust to portable devices prompt for USB data connection.
Other preventive measures against Juice Jacking include installing Antivirus and updating them to the latest definitions always; keeping mobile devices up to date with the latest patches; using one’s own power bank; keeping mobile phone off when charging in public places; as well as ensuring use of one’s own charger, if one must charge in public.
On the other hand, the NCC-CSIRT Advisory 0001 of January 27, 2022, warns that Facebook for Android is vulnerable to a permission issue which gives privilege to anyone with physical access to the android device to accept friend requests without unlocking the phone.

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Technology, Others Responsible For Nigeria’s Bonga Oil Operations

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The Managing Director, Shell Nigeria Exploration and Company Limited (SNEPCo), Elohor Aiboni, said Bonga, Nigeria’s first deep-water asset, has recorded major milestones, due to effective leadership, cutting-edge technology, continuous improvement and collaboration with stakeholders.
She noted that since coming on stream in November 2005, Bonga has maintained a track record of production that saw it achieve one-billion-barrel export on February 13, last year.
In her presentation, titled “The Bonga Journey to a Billion Barrels”, at the ongoing 2024 Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, Texas, United States, Aiboni, said: “SNEPCo is grateful for the contributions of all the parties to the Bonga story and we can all be proud of the milestones.
“Bonga has been consistent. In 2014, nine years after coming onstream, it achieved half a billion barrels of crude and doubled it in 2023. We have worked relentlessly to ensure excellent asset management, project and wells delivery and deployment of technology and innovations in our operations”.
According to her, these factors, “coupled with the supportive partnership of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited and our co-venturers – TotalEnergies, EP Nigeria Limited; Nigerian Agip Exploration; and Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited, make Bonga stand out as a world-class investment case”.
She continued that, “SNEPCo also enjoyed the support of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in the success of Bonga operations”.
Aiboni also listed the challenges of keeping the Bonga Floating Production, Storage and Offloading vessel full as the asset ages and dealing with unexpected developments with subsea wells and equipment.
She said: “SNEPCo responded with a campaign of operational excellence, which among other initiatives, led to the creation of a programme known as the Bonga Business Improvement Plan that continually reviews and identifies improvement initiatives and drives sustainability in operations and upskilling of staff.
“The Bonga success story has been led by Nigerians who have been managing directors of SNEPCo since it was established in 1993, in a deliberate policy by Shell to develop indigenous manpower for deep-water operations in Nigeria.
“Today, some 97percent of the SNEPCo workforce is Nigerian and overall, Bonga has helped to create a new generation of Nigerian deep-water professionals.
“Our vision at SNEPCo remains to be the best deep-water business, powering growth and achieving net zero emissions in line with Shell’s Powering Progress strategy”.

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Banks Cut Borrowing From CBN By 44% 

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Banks’ borrowings from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) fell month-on-month, (MoM) by 44 percent to N12.16 trillion in April from N21.7 trillion in March.
Analysis of latest data from the CBN shows that the 44percent drop represents the first MoM decline in banks borrowing from since January when it increased by 268.7 percent to N3.6 trillion from N976.29 billion in December 2023.
However, further analysis showed that banks’ deposits in the CBN SDF grew MoM by 118.4 percent to N428.97 billion in April from N196.37 billion in March 2024.
Banks make use of the SLF to access liquidity to run their day-to-day business operations while the Standing Deposit Facility window (SDF) on the other hand, is an overnight deposit facility that allows banks to lodge excess liquidity (money) with the CBN and earn interest.
The decline in banks’ borrowing from SLF may reflect an increase in banking system liquidity and also the decision of the apex bank last year to remove the limit on the remunerable daily placements by banks at the SDF.
According to the CBN Governor, Mr. Olayemi Cardoso, the CBN removed the cap on the remunerable SDF to increase activity in the SDF window and manage liquidity.

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Expert Highlights Technology Impact On Fintech Industry Growth 

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A Financial technology expert, Olatunji Akinrinola, has highlighted the exponential growth of the FinTech industry, which according to him, was driven by technological advancements.
Akinrinola made this assertion in a  press release recently, where he stressed that the role of technology in driving this exponential growth in the FinTech sector was very outstanding.
According to him, Technology has revolutionised the way financial services are delivered, making them more accessible, efficient, and inclusive.
“Through innovations such as mobile banking, digital payments, and blockchain technology, FinTech companies have been able to reach a larger population and provided them with access to financial services”, he stated.
Akinrinola emphasised the role of technology in enabling financial inclusion, adding: “Technology has democratised access to financial services, particularly in regions with limited banking infrastructure.
“Mobile money platforms and digital wallets have empowered individuals to conduct financial transactions conveniently and securely, without the need for traditional banking services”.
He also underscored the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and data analytics in driving innovation within the FinTech industry,  noting: “AI-powered algorithms and predictive analytics have revolutionised risk assessment, fraud detection, and customer personalisation in financial services.
“These technologies enable FinTech companies to provide tailored solutions and mitigate risks more effectively, ultimately enhancing the overall customer experience”.
Akinrinola stressed the importance of regulatory frameworks in fostering the growth of the FinTech industry.
“While technology has accelerated the growth of FinTech, it is essential to establish robust regulatory frameworks to ensure consumer protection and maintain market stability. Regulators play a crucial role in balancing innovation with risk management, thereby creating a conducive environment for the sustainable growth of the FinTech sector”, he stated.
Akinrinola underscored the role of technology in driving the exponential growth of the FinTech industry, saying, “Technology has been a game-changer for the FinTech sector, enabling innovation, expanding access to financial services, and driving economic growth.
“As technology continues to evolve, the FinTech industry will undoubtedly play a significant role in shaping the future of financial services ecosystem”.

Corlins Walter

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