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WEBINAR EVENT: 13 July 2021 12pm (GMT -2) Strengthening cybersecurity to boost financial inclusion in Africa

Chance to hear ADFI Coordinator discuss the importance of building cybersecurity within financial services and the role it plays in digital financial inclusion.

ADA le Midi de la microfinance en ligne

For more than a decade now, there has been a wide-ranging debate on how the digitisation process, particularly in Africa, is proving to be a valuable lever for increasing financial inclusion. The African continent has been particularly dynamic and rapid in the adoption of digital solutions for people that before had no access to formal financial instruments. The reasons for this are varied and certainly, the arrival of relatively low-cost digital solutions capable of filling a vacuum and serving a population that is on average very young (77% of the population is under 35 years old), are all elements that have favoured this trend. 

But if it is true, as the Mastercard Foundation and IFC wrote a few years ago*, that "Financial inclusion is one of Africa's great success stories over the past decade" thanks to the digitisation process, the future of this success story will also depend on the attention and resources that will be devoted to the issue of cybersecurity.

When we think of cybersecurity, we usually have a tendency to pay a lot of attention to the big players, but what are the points of attention and concrete actions that microfinance institutions, even the smallest ones, need to consider in order to manage the risks linked to the digitisation of their operations? Essentially, what can an MFI do to reduce its exposure to the risks?

This Midi will allow us to understand why cybersecurity is a key issue for the inclusive finance sector and its future development.

Sheila Okiro, ADFI Coordinator has extensive experiences on the topic and will be joined by Jean-Louis Perrier, the Programme Director of the ADFI-supported initiative the African Cybersecurity Resource Centre (ACRC) for Financial Inclusion, a continent-wide initiative that aims to strengthen the cyber resilience of the financial system in Africa, secure the fast development of digital financial systems, and ultimately increase financial inclusion on the continent, a key for economic and human development.

Ivo Jeník, Senior Financial Sector Specialist at CGAP will conclude the Midi by highlighting the main points that emerged from the discussion.

Discussion will be moderated by Matthew Genazzini, Coordinator of the Smallholder Safety Net Up-scaling Programme (SSNUP) at ADA


Matthew Genazzini, Coordinator of the SSNUP Programme, ADA (Luxembourg)

12.00: Introduction

12.05: Discussion between the speakers
• Sheila Okiro, Chief Investment Officer in the Financial Intermediation and Inclusion Division and ADFI Coordinator (Africa Digital Financial inclusion) – African Development Bank (Côte d'Ivoire)
• Jean-Louis Perrier, Africa Cybersecurity Resource Center (ACRC) Programme Director and Co-founder of Suricate Solutions (Luxembourg)

12.40: Questions and answers with online participants​

12.55: Closing remarks
Ivo Jeník, Senior Financial Sector Specialist, CGAP (USA)

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