Image from BICS.

The rapid pace of digital transformation in East Africa has had a significant impact not only on the way people live their lives, but also on the way communication and commerce are conducted, enabling the modern customer to have it all. do – immediately.

It has also had the unintended consequence of changing the way we are targeted by fraudsters and cybercriminals, including changing the nature of the cyber threats and attacks we face in a mobile-driven digital world.

The price of cybercrime

According to a Accent Report released in 2019, the total value of cybercrime risk over the next five years is estimated at $ 5.2 trillion. According to the same report, an average cyber attack costs $ 13 million, with phishing, social engineering and stolen device crime accounting for $ 2.4 million of the cost of an average attack.

Statistics from various reports show that the threat of cybercrime and insecurity is widespread in the East African region. Uganda lost 42 million shillings to cybercrime in 2017, while in 2018 Rwanda lost six billion francs. In Kenya, between April and June 2019, the country suffered 26.6 million cyber threats.

Additionally, in a mobile-driven digital landscape such as the East African region, the proliferation of mobile devices and the penetration of mobile internet have opened the door to mobile cybersecurity threats. Mobile users are exposed to threats such as SIM swapping, account takeovers, man-in-the-middle attacks and phishing attacks.

High Internet penetration

Since December 2020, Statista reports, Kenya had an Internet penetration rate of about 85.2%. This high rate is mainly due to the fact that Kenya is home to M-Pesa, a mobile wallet provider that offers a secure payment system that encourages internet access.

Therefore, mobile authentication is becoming increasingly important in the overall East African market, not only as a way to effectively counter mobile cybersecurity threats, but also to simultaneously improve customer experience (CX ) and increase engagement with brands.

Mobile authentication is the process of verifying a user’s identity through their mobile device. This verification can be performed transparently, without interrupting the customer experience. In practice, this means that organizations can streamline processes while simultaneously protecting their business and customers against cybercrime.

Mobile authentication services verify the identity of users through a variety of means including Silent Mobile Verification (SMV), Know Your Customer (KYC), SIM swap detection, and instant form filling.

The advent of smartphones has led to a steady increase in mobile purchases in East Africa, with recent data showing consumers are increasingly comfortable making transactions on their phones. This is largely due to the increase in mobile security and customer trust.

Increase user confidence and security

The benefits of appropriate mobile authentication are manifold, as it touches the entire customer journey. By creating a secure mobile environment, organizations can increase user confidence and security. Mobile verification continuously validates the customer’s identity throughout the customer journey. It increases user confidence and security by protecting their account.

Mobile authentication can also facilitate faster and more convenient integration. Silent verification can ensure that customers are who they say they are during the onboarding process, and instant form filling speeds up the process.

In addition, mobile authentication can also lead to reduced cart abandonment, as instant form filling makes the shopping experience easier and more convenient.

At the same time, mobile authentication can ensure GDPR compliance, as authentication services are based on a user-centric approach, ensuring that neither businesses nor mobile network operators learn anything. or again on the end user, apart from the information they already hold.

Mobile authentication services help protect customers while improving user experience and increasing engagement.

Mobile authentication protects user information by providing a strong authentication layer consisting of three real-time identification and authorization services. These are used to protect online transactions for user applications and mobile websites, resulting in an improved and more secure user experience.

Edited by Luis Monzon
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