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Ministry of Labour issues engagement letters to six banks to open accounts for 774,000 SPW beneficiaries

Six banks have been engaged by FG to commence account opening for beneficiaries of the government programme.

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FG, Labour agree cut in electricity tariff for 3 months, to distribute 6 million free meters, SPW jobs, FG kickstarts its 774,000 jobs SPW initiative as Buhari backs Keyamo, FG urges DStv, MTN, others to offer free subscription, airtime, data to Nigerians

The Minister of State for Labour and Productivity, Festus Kenyamo has announced that he has issued letters of engagement to six Nigerian banks to commence account opening with BVN for the 774,000 participants of the Special Public Works Programme in their branches, through-out the 774 local governments.

The information was disclosed via the verified Twitter handle of the minister. In the tweets, the minister listed the banks as; Zenith, UBA, Access, Fidelity, FCMB and Heritage banks.

Recall that 1,000 participants were drawn each from the 774 local government areas in Nigeria for the Special Public Works Programme. In response to the nature of diversity and remoteness of some participants, the minister allayed the fears of missing out from the registration by the beneficiaries, stating that it has gotten assurance from the banks that even in places where they have no physical presence or branch, registration centers would be provided. Hence participants don’t need to travel far.

READ: CBN and NIPOST may partner on retail banking

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(READ MORE: Lai Mohammed reveals what FG is using loans for)

The minister said, ‘‘The banks assured us that even in LGAs where they don’t have branches, temporary registration centers would be opened in such LGAs so that the participants would not have to travel far to open their accounts”.

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The minister further remarked that the breakdown of banks taking care of each of the LGAs will soon be published.

Explore the Nairametrics Research Website for Economic and Financial Data 

About the Special Public Works Programme

Special Public works department is one of the four (4) core focus of the NDE. It seeks to identify and optimize employment opportunities that abound in the public works sector by organizing the skilled, un-skilled and semi-skilled persons that are unemployed to carry out utility, environmental, infrastructural development and sanitation works.

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: Kwara State sets up N500 million recovery fund for businesses destroyed by hoodlums 

Kwara State government has established a N500 million recovery fund for businesses whose properties were looted by hoodlums. 

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Traders, Kwara, Artisans

Kwara State Government has set-up N500 million recovery fund for businesses whose properties were looted and vandalized in the state by hoodlums who seized the #EndSARS protests to wreak havoc on private and public properties. 

This was disclosed by Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, the Governor of Kwara State while commiserating with owners of all the businesses affected, in a visit to the Kwara Mall and Agro Mall. After the visit, he shared a tweet on his official Twitter handle to back the claim. 

Abdulrazaq condemned the actions of the hoodlums as mindless, as the hoodlums looted valuable items of businesses in the state capital on Friday. He reiterated that the mindless looting by people may bring businesses to their knees, and cause massive loss of jobs and a surge in the poverty rate. 

The Governor, however, commiserated with owners of all the businesses affected and announced the N500 million SME recovery fund to assist them as part of the administration’s efforts to bring them back on their feet following the incident. 

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What they are saying 

Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq said: 

“It is a time for all hands to be on deck. It is not just Kwara they wanted to burn down. They wanted to burn the whole country down. I urge all of us to stand up and resist that,” he said. 

“While the hoodlums were looting (on Friday), I was holding a meeting with executives and members of the National Association of Kwara State Students and National Association of Nigeria Students, Kwara axis. It shows students and youths were not part of the looting. Those involved were just hoodlums and thieves.” 

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 “We are therefore not going to leave the business owners like that. We are setting up a N500m fund for those that were affected to access. The application form is live and active on the State Government’s website and can now be filled by interested parties. We are going to get them back as soon as possible.” 

What to expect 

The N500 million SME recovery fund set-up by the Kwara State Government can be accessed only by businesses that were victims of the recent looting that happened in major commercial areas in the state. This fund is expected to help the businesses ward-off the impact of the destruction, and get them back on their feet towards the path of growth and expansion. 

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: Beer Sectoral Group to support victims with N50 million

Beer Sectoral Group of MAN to support victims and families of those affected by the #EndSARS protest with N50 million

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Beer Sectoral Group of MAN to support victims and families of those affected by the #EndSARS protest with N50 million

The Beer Sectoral Group (BSG) of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), has announced the creation of N50million fund to support those affected by the civil unrest spiked by the hijacked #EndSARS protests.

This disclosure was made in a statement released by BSG this morning, which was seen by Nairametrics.

The statement reads,

“Over the past few days, we have all witnessed the sad events that have taken place in our beloved country Nigeria. What commenced as a peaceful movement was overrun and became marred by violence, resulting in loss of lives and property across our nation.”

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“The Beer Sectoral Group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria is committed to Nigeria, to the inclusivity and to the valuing of each other. We, therefore, denounce the violence that has erupted across our nation and we want to lend a hand to support those rendered vulnerable as a result of this critical social issue.”

“To this end, we hereby announce the creation of N50 million fund to support the victims and families of those affected by this crisis. BSG will be working with partner agencies to administer this fund.”

“We know that this does not bring back the lives that have been lost or undo the injustice many have suffered, but we believe it is a step towards healing our vibrant nation and reinforce our commitment to contribute to the dialogue and action which can support a better Nigeria for everyone.”

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(READ MORE:7 stowaways, including Nigerians, arrested after suspected hijacking off Isle of Wight)

What you should know

  • The Beer Sectoral Group is a group under the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, it includes key producers in the Beer sector such as Nigerian Breweries Plc, Guinness Nigeria Plc, and International Breweries Plc.
  • The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) was established in May 1971 as a company limited by guarantee. The establishment of the Association was motivated by the desire to have a focal point of communication and consultation between industry on the one hand, and the government and the general public on the other.

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Business News

COVID-19’s impact on cybersecurity and securing the remote workforce

Examining current cybersecurity challenges due to this pandemic as well as tips and recommendations on how to address them.

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We live in exciting times, COVID-19 has taken the world by storm, and as part of efforts to curb the spread of the disease, the pandemic has forced organisations to adapt to working remotely quickly.

Currently, working from home has become a new reality for organisations and their employees. As convenient as this may sound, it is fraught with its challenges.

From a cybersecurity perspective, working from home presents significant risks to organisations because cybercriminals around the world are capitalising on this crisis, and that makes the need to secure the remote workforce an ever-growing concern.

Since the outbreak began, there have been spikes in cyber-attacks as cybercriminals are using COVID-19 as bait to trap organisations and their employees.

To avoid falling victim, organisations must address these challenges without introducing new flaws by implementing and evaluating cybersecurity safeguards/controls.

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In this article, we will be talking about some current cybersecurity challenges due to this pandemic as well as tips and recommendations on how to address them.

Phishing

Phishing is a cybercrime, with phishing, targets are contacted by email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution to lure individuals into providing sensitive data such as personally identifiable information, credit card details and passwords. Cybercriminals know we desire more information at this time, and they are using that as bait to get people to click on malicious links via emails and text messages.

These messages often have an appearance of legitimacy and designed this way to pull you in, getting you to click on links that redirect you to malware-infested sites that could steal your personal information, money, or both.

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There have been numerous cases of criminals targeting governments and organisations such as the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO reports a fivefold increase in cyberattacks directed at its staff and email scams targeting the public at large.

In another scenario, due to shortage of health-care-related products such as PPEs, test kits and ventilators, cybercriminals have impersonated sellers and manufacturers of such products and duped not just people and organisations, but also States, out of millions of dollars.

Business Email Compromise (BEC), a specialist type of phishing attack is becoming increasingly prevalent too. BEC attacks are designed to impersonate senior executives and trick employees, customers, or vendors into wiring payment for goods or services to alternate bank accounts.

How can you protect yourself? Here are five things you can do:

  1. Always verify the source of the message – never swallow anything hook, line and sinker. Pay attention to spellings or grammatical errors in emails or text messages.
  2. Never respond to unsolicited messages and calls that ask for personal or financial details.
  3. When entering sensitive information on a website, always verify that you are on a secure and legitimate website. A quick tip is to look out for the lock icon in your browser when you need to enter login details or other sensitive information such as your debit card details.
  4. Do not click on links from sources you do not know. Act by reporting them. Email service platforms such as Google’s Gmail and Microsoft’s Outlook, give you the ability to report phishing emails, this helps to protect other users from spam and abuse.
  5. Question everything. Always remember the adage, “if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is.”

The Not-As-Secure Home Environment

As mentioned earlier, one of the fallouts of the pandemic is the shift from traditional working models to remote working. This has led to many individuals using their personal computers to conduct business and carry out work-related duties. These computers might not have up-to-date operating system patches or useful antivirus software, and attackers can easily exploit these vulnerabilities.

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It is essential organisations get employees on approved and secure devices to protect not only themselves but also the firm. Also, it is vital to know that while employees work remotely, they are not behind the typical corporate security perimeter. They are not protected by firewalls, no intrusion detection or prevention systems, no proxies etc. and with employees connecting directly to the internet with personal modems and routers, their visibility to attackers increases.

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What can be done to prevent this?

  1. Always ensure your operating system and security software is up-to-date with the most recent patches.
  2. Avoid free, unsecured, public WiFi.
  3. If you must connect remotely to your organisation’s network, maybe to login to a corporate application, use a VPN. It reduces your visibility on the internet by creating a safe and encrypted connection known as a tunnel.
  4. Use Multi-factor authentication. Authentication deals with validating the identity of individuals. It requires users to prove they are who they claim to be. There are three factors of authentication: the knowledge factor or something you know such as passwords, the possession factor or something you have such as tokens, access cards, keys and the inherence factor or something you are such as biometrics – fingerprints, retina.

Consequently, when we talk about multifactor authentication, the idea is having at least two of these factors present when proving your identity to a system. Use cases when logging into emails, corporate applications, and internet banking platforms.

Cyberattacks are nothing new, but in recent times, they have increased in frequency and magnitude. Cybercriminals are not letting this crisis go to waste, and they are working overtime, so organisations must take steps to protect themselves.

Governance and risk management functions must conduct and drive comprehensive risk assessments and business impact analysis for critical functions and processes within the organisation.

Policies around information security, cybersecurity and acceptable use of devices should be up-to-date and disseminated to all employees.

Organisations should test and update their cyber incident response, business continuity and disaster recovery plans. Operating system updates and security software patches must be mandatory.

Critical systems such as servers, core business applications should be monitored. Logs and security events from such systems should be reviewed daily. This will help to identify anomalies or suspicious activities quickly.

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Finally, do not forget your people. Humans are the weakest link in the security chain. It does not matter if you have the best technology or the most efficient processes. If your people are not informed, they put the entire organisation at risk.

Now is not the time to cut down on information and cybersecurity training and awareness. Learning interventions such as videos, newsletters, pictures, even games and quizzes go a long way in building a security-conscious culture in an organisation.

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These recommendations if implemented, can strengthen the security posture of your enterprise, enabling you to build and maintain a cyber-resilient one.

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