How Nigeria is Securing its Cloud Future


By Ini-Obong B. Obot

Nigeria is a country that is undergoing rapid digital transformation and adopting cloud-based technologies in various sectors, such as e-commerce, banking, healthcare, and e-governance. These sectors handle large amounts of sensitive data and rely on critical infrastructure that are essential for the nation’s growth and security. However, they also face the challenge of protecting their data and information systems from cyber threats, which are becoming more sophisticated and frequent.

To address this challenge, Nigeria is embracing a new security model that is gaining popularity worldwide: the zero trust architecture. This model operates on the principle of “never trust, always verify”. It assumes that any user or service requesting access to a resource is a potential threat, regardless of their network location or previous connections. It requires every request to be authenticated, authorized, and encrypted before granting access. It also uses other techniques

such as micro-segmentation, multi-factor authentication, security automation, analytics, and end-to-end encryption to protect data and information systems from cyberattacks.The zero trust architecture offers several benefits for Nigeria’s cloud security. First, it can prevent data breaches by applying security controls to protect sensitive data, whether it is on-premises, in data centers, or in the cloud. Second, it can reduce the attack surface by limiting user access rights to the minimum necessary to perform their job functions. Third, it can improve the response time and efficiency by using artificial intelligence and machine learning to identify and mitigate potential threats. Fourth, it can enhance the user experience by providing seamless and secure access to resources across different devices and platforms.

The Nigerian government has been proactive in promoting initiatives that support the adoption of zero trust architecture and cloud security. One of these initiatives is the National Cloud Computing Policy of 2019, which aims to foster the development of a secure and resilient cloud ecosystem in the country. The policy also outlines the roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders, such as cloud service providers, cloud users, and regulators, in ensuring data protection, privacy, and sovereignty. The policy also encourages the use of local cloud service providers, which can offer more customized and cost-effective solutions for the Nigerian market. Another initiative is the National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy of 2021, which provides a framework for enhancing the nation’s cybersecurity capabilities and resilience. The policy and

strategy also emphasize the importance of developing and retaining cloud security professionalswho possess comprehensive knowledge of cloud infrastructure, data privacy, data protection, anddata encryption techniques. These professionals can help identify vulnerabilities, implementsecurity protocols, and ensure regulatory compliance in the cloud environment.The adoption of zero trust architecture and cloud security is not just a trend, but a necessity in thecurrent digital landscape. As Nigeria continues to make giant strides in digital transformation andcloud adoption, the role of cloud security experts becomes more vital. These experts can helpsecure the nation’s data and information systems, as well as its national interests, in the cloud era

Ini-Obong B Obot