AfricaCERT and STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Messaging Convention Seal Pact to Spread Online Safety Awareness Campaign Across Africa and Globe


CAMBRIDGE, Mass., and ACCRA, Ghana, Feb. 16, 2015 (BUSINESS WIRE) - In an important step toward raising public cyber awareness across Africa, the African Forum of Computer Incident Response Teams (AfricaCERT) and the STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Messaging Convention joined forces this month to propagate the global STOP. THINK. CONNECT. online safety awareness campaign to the African economies represented by AfricaCERT’s membership.

The organizations will work to promote cybersecurity awareness at the individual user level in AfricaCERT member economies and to promote the use of the Messaging Convention’s STOP. THINK. CONNECT. slogan and associated logo as well as its cybersecurity messaging assets suite.

AfricaCERT Executive Director Jean Robert Hountomey said, “By unifying our effort we muscle our commitment for a safer, more resilient African cyberspace that remains an engine of development growth and opportunity"

For the Messaging Convention’s campaign – adopted by dozens of multinational corporations, the United States Department of Homeland Security, Panama, Paraguay, Uruguay, Dominica and, most recently, Jamaica – the MOU is a milestone event, pointing up the potential for globally unified online safety measures. 

Messaging Convention co-founder and APWG Secretary General Peter Cassidy said, “The agreement with AfricaCERT encourages us that economic regions and multi-lateral organizations can begin to work together on essential operations on a more or less globalized basis. The good guys can plot and conspire, too. We’ll give them a conspiracy they won’t believe.” 

Michael Kaiser, executive director of the National Cyber Security Alliance that helped found the STOP. THINK. CONNECT campaign, said, "Keeping the Internet safe and secure is a global issue. With important organizations like AfricaCERT joining a global harmonized effort to keep people safe and secure online, the possibility of reaching all computer users with this critical information comes one step closer fruition."

The convention’s logo and slogan and advisory suite were established by a number of US-based industrial powerhouses and two NGO’s in the US, the APWG and the National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCSA) in 2009. To date, they’ve been adopted by hundreds of companies, national governments, local agencies and being considered for adoption by governments in Asia, Central America, South America and Caribbean. European deployment announcements are forthcoming in 2015.

The Memorandum of Understanding signed with AfricaCERT for promotion of the STOP. THINK. CONNECT. campaign is the first that the convention has entered into with a multi-lateral trade association in Africa. 

About the STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Messaging Convention
STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™ is the first-ever coordinated message to help all digital citizens stay safer and more secure online. The message was created by an unprecedented coalition of private companies, nonprofits and government organizations. The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) and National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) in 2009 led the effort to find a unified online safety message that could be adopted across public and private sectors. The Messaging Convention’s goal is to help every human being on the Internet understand not only the risks that come with using the Internet, but also the importance of practicing safe online behavior. 

AfricaCERT is the forum of Computer Incident Response Teams, aims to propose solutions to Challenges for Internet Health in Af* Internet Ecosystem.The objectives of AfricaCERT include, but are not restricted to : Assisting African countries in establishing CSIRTs; Fostering and supporting education and outreach programs in ICT Security; Encouraging information sharing; Promoting good practices and experiences sharing among members to develop a comprehensive framework for cybersecurity including better addressing of legal and regulatory issues; Assisting African CSIRTS in improving Cyber readiness and enhancing the resilience of ICT Infrastructure.

STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Messaging Convention
Peter Cassidy, +1 617-669-1123

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