The Federal Government said it blocked over 200 cyberattacks during the Presidential and National Assembly elections held on February 25.

The Managing Director of the government’s IT infrastructure company, Galaxy Backbone (GBB) Prof. Muhammad Abubakar, disclosed this at the opening session of a two-day Ministerial Training for the company’s Board members and Management staffers on Tuesday in Abuja.

According to him, a business continuity and cyberspace protection committee had also been formed to guard and regulate digital activities while optimising the GBB’S Technical Services.

Increased attacks: While noting that there was a spike in cyber attacks during the elections period, the GBB MD said:

  • “On the election day alone, we were able to block more than 200 attacks and the next day, the attacks geometrically increased to about 1.2 million and all were blocked from our own businesses.”

Plans ahead of the elections: A day before the February 25 elections, the Federal Government inaugurated a committee to monitor and advise it on the appropriate measures to take the protection of the nation’s cyberspace and ICT infrastructure from potential attacks.

  • The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami, inaugurated the Committee led by the Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Adeolu Akande.
  • The Minister, who represented President Mohammadu Buhari, announced that the constitution of the Committee was on the directive of Mr President that he puts in place, a committee that will work to coordinate computer security centres in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry in collaboration with other relevant institutions towards intercepting potential cyber-attacks.
  • He said with the increased role of ICT in online activities, and its crucial role in the conduct of the 2023 General Elections, in line with the Electoral Act, as amended, the job of the Committee will assist the nation in conducting free, fair and credible elections.

The Committee, which also had the Minister as a member alongside the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, the Director General of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Abdullahi, and the CEO of Galaxy Backbone, Abubakar, worked from Friday, February 24, 2023, till the morning of Monday, February 27, 2023.