Africa is undergoing a dramatic digital transformation. This transformation has been facilitated by the rapid migration towards digital technology and growth in digital services provided by both businesses and governments.

Governments have implemented many far-reaching reforms over the past decade, which are more concretely introducing in Africa the notions of digital identity, digitisation of government services (e-government), biometrics and financial inclusion through digital solutions such as mobile money services.

However, these shifts, which are also profoundly changing our societies by revolutionising the economy, offering countless opportunities and reshaping our daily lives and even our social relations, bring with them new challenges in cyber security.

The national protection of information systems and the data processed therein is a fundamental issue for all security actors, such as public authorities, national security authorities, specialized entities dedicated to the processing of cybersecurity as well as as all public or private operators who provide essential services through information systems.

Any significant disruption to the operation of digital technologies, whether global or local, affects the security of economic transactions, citizens' sense of security, the efficiency of public sector institutions, production processes and services. and, therefore, on national security in general.

As a result, cybersecurity constitutes a new crucial dimension of national security and sovereignty, whether it is a question in particular of ensuring the continuity of public services and the functioning of the State, the protection of essential national infrastructures against malicious attacks or other destabilizations made possible by information and communication technologies. 

As these threats have no geographical boundaries, cyber security measures require strong international cooperation. This is the very essence of the Lomé Cybersecurity Summit, which brought together head of state and ministers, private sector and civil society leaders to engage in high-level dialogue and allowed to articulate cooperation and coordination solutions namely by the Lomé Declaration adoption, to respond to the urgent cyber security issues facing all African actors.

SE Faure Essozimna GNASSINGBE,

President of the Republic