Technology and security are two of the most important sectors in the modern world. Technology is ever-present in our work and personal lives, for example, with emails, video calls, smartphones and online connectivity. Security is there in the background to keep us safe and prevent our personal details being stolen or our devices getting infected by a virus while using this tech.
Kenya has long been acknowledged as a real global leader for tech and security, and is certainly a leading country in Africa in these sectors. At the end of 2019, the ICT sector in the country was valued at around $717 million, which is quite a figure! The attention that Kenya has gained in this sector has also been helped by there being a Kenyan team chosen for Huawei’s global ICT competition in 2020, to represent sub-Saharan Africa.
With the World Bank showing that the ICT sector in Kenya has grown by 23% over the last decade, its importance is clear to see. This also positions Kenya to play a key role in the future of tech and security. But what might this entail?
Advances in mobile payments
Kenya could really help in further developing the tech for mobile payments on a global scale. Already, the M-Pesa mobile payment platform from Safaricom is popular within Kenya – and this looks likely to become more widely used in the future. As more people utilize M-Pesa, mobile payments should attract more attention and become more popular on a wider scale.
Of course, the many Kenyan companies involved in this sector also mean it is best placed to push mobile payments forward. This is not only in terms of the technology needed to facilitate payments digitally but also the security built into platforms to make them safe. With innovative companies such as M-KOPA operating from Kenya, the country’s future at the heart of tech and security is assured.
Leading the way in online casino tech
The online gambling sector in Kenya is buoyant and benefits from the liberal attitude that the government has to it. As a result, Kenyans are very familiar with online casino facilities, for both work and play. This sector generates multi-millions for the country’s economy each year and sees many top online casino sites operate within its borders. The number of online casinos in Kenya is large – from Black Diamond to Yebo.
All this positions the country perfectly to be at the forefront of this thriving sector and to help develop the technology that casino platforms will use in the future. We may also see gaming companies appear in the country to provide safe and fun online games to casinos. In terms of security, the digitally savvy workforce in Kenya have the skills needed to develop the next advances in online casino security measures.
Set to influence future of AI research globally
The IBM Research Centre in Nairobi is one of just two in the whole of Africa. This alone sets Kenya up as a major innovator on the continent and a global hub for tech and online security research. It also shows how investment and entrepreneurs are transforming Africa. One of the major sectors being researched at this centre in Nairobi is next-gen AI technology.
The work being done here is crucial to the future of AI, helping it be developed for use across a number of industries on a truly international scale. It also puts Kenya right out there at the front of cutting-edge AI research and how AI can be safely implemented.
Commitment to online security
The fast-growing ICT sector in Kenya has seen the government recently unveil a National Cybersecurity Plan, which should help Kenya protect itself from online attacks. Of course, this focus on cyber security will also allow the country to work with global partners and drive future security innovations. The skilled workforce that Kenya has in this field could well see the country become an international leader in terms of new anti-virus software being developed, or other online security methods being created for use around the world.
Future looks bright for Kenya
Kenya is looking to be a country on the up, with a bright future. No longer reliant only on sectors such as tourism for revenue, it has invested in the digital economy to set itself up as a major force in tech and security globally. As the future looms into view, the above shows just why Kenya could be set to play a pivotal role in online security and technology advances.