Kenya is grappling with a significant surge in cyber threats, with a recent report from Kaspersky, a Russian cybersecurity firm, revealing a worrisome spike in phishing attacks during the third quarter of 2023. 

Kaspersky's data underscores a 32 per cent increase in phishing attacks from Q2 2023, with the Q3 2023 figures also marking a 12 per cent surge compared to the same quarter in the previous year.

"Phishing attacks detected in Kenya in Q3 2023 increased by 32 per cent compared to Q2 2023 and by 12 per cent compared to Q3 2022," Kaspersky said.

The report highlights that Kenya has witnessed a considerable uptick in attacks on industrial control systems (ICS) computers, constituting 28 per cent of the total attacks.

ICS computers are integral to various sectors, including energy, mining, and automotive manufacturing.

To address this escalating threat landscape, Kaspersky emphasizes the need for businesses to adopt proactive measures, urging the integration of advanced technologies such as threat feeds and security information and event management systems.

“Businesses today should be proactive and counter these cyberthreats with advanced technologies such as threat feeds, security information and event management systems,” Kaspersky advised.

In terms of attacks on the Internet of Things (IoT), Kenya trails behind Nigeria with 12 per cent of the targeted attacks.

Kaspersky recommends that organizations conduct regular cyber skill checkups among employees and provide competent training to mitigate risks effectively.

Furthermore, the report underscores the necessity of educating corporate users on potential privacy risks associated with virtual environments.

Kaspersky advises businesses to install firmware updates promptly for digital devices, including virtual headsets, to enhance overall cybersecurity resilience.

"Install updates for the firmware used on digital devices (including virtual headsets) as soon as they become available," Kaspersky added.

As Kenya grapples with the escalating threat landscape, cybersecurity experts stress the critical importance of proactive measures and technological advancements to safeguard confidential information and protect against cyberattacks in an increasingly interconnected digital world.