First cyber security training and testing center for Sub-Saharan Africa

Pan African cyber security consultancy firm Serianu has opened the doors of the first of its kind state-of-the -art Cyber Immersion Center. The training center targets cyber security professionals in Africa to hone their skills and ramp up their cyber-attack preparedness.

Located in Nairobi, Serianu’s Cyber Immersion Center is grounded in the metropolis that is fast emerging as Sub-Sahara Africa’s technology hub where for the first time in the region’s technological history, cyber security professionals now have an opportunity to stay a step ahead of the curve in an ever-evolving global cyber security landscape.

Serianu Chief Executive Officer William Makatiani said in a statement that with incidences of cyber threats growing at an average of 25% annually and losses piling into hundreds of millions of shillings for private and public organizations,  the firm decided to invest in a local Cyber Immersion Center to equip organizations the skills to deal with attackers who have become more sophisticated.

The only one in Sub Saharan Africa, it mirrors those existing in Europe, the US and Asia, and is designed to meet a huge demand for such a specialized facility that provides professionals with a modern, third party environment to test individual and organizational cyber threat resilience, train cyber security professionals and deliver locally designed courses based on relevant case studies.

Makatiani noted that the Serianu Cyber Immersion Center is designed to bridge the existing gap of sufficient cyber security experts by bringing globally accepted training to a local environment, conducted by a distinguished team of consultants and practitioners.

“In Kenya, the market currently requires about 40,000 cyber security experts, yet we only have just under 1,000 professionals at the moment,” said Makatiani adding that, “While typical professional training takes between six to twelve months our initial target is to be able to empower 10 specialists every month through our Cyber Immersion Center and that way chart a path towards self-sufficiency and self- reliance with locally built solutions.”

Conservative estimates put Kenya’s total annual investment in cyber security training at $4,000,000 (Sh400 million).

Serianu chief operations officer Joseph Mathenge said that Serianu’s Cyber Immersion Center is a hybrid between an advanced cyber range and an educational institute. The cyber range provides trainees with an opportunity to conduct realistic drills to test their personal knowledge and review their organizations’ cyber responsiveness.

The training institute additionally provides cyber skills development and education programs tailored to the varying needs of directors, managers and technicians covering simulations, product testing, deep dive applications and systems as well as digital forensics among many others.  

Through its two-prong approach, Serianu’s Cyber Immersion Center aims to build a strong pool of cyber security talent pipeline to drive its cyber security initiatives and build a dynamic national as well as regional cyber security ecosystem.

He said that the Serianu Cyber Immersion Center is now open to train local enterprises and public organizations with the necessary know-how to counter cyber threats in a holistic manner to help them mitigate the risks and costs associated with cyber disruptions. At the same time, The Center provides experienced cyber security professionals with the opportunity to enhance their skills by training with leading cyber security experts

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