AFRIPOL Signs MoU With Group-IB To Strengthen Cybersecurity Capabilities

AFRIPOL Signs MoU With Group-IB To Strengthen Cybersecurity Capabilities

AFRIPOL has signed today a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Group-IB, a global cybersecurity leader headquartered in Singapore, at AFRIPOL’s headquarters in Algiers. The MoU was signed by Mr Jalel Chelba, Ag Executive Director of AFRIPOL, and Mr Dmitry Volkov, CEO and founder of Group-IB. The MoU fosters collaboration between Group-IB and AFRIPOL committed to fighting cybercrime in Africa.

The partnership between AFRIPOL and Group-IB, aligned with their mutual commitment to combating cybercrime, is designed to enhance cybersecurity across Africa. This is achieved by exchanging intelligence on threats, sharing insights about cybercriminals and their networks, and conducting collaborative investigations and operations against cybercrime within the region. Group-IB will share its technological advancements and specialized knowledge in cyber investigations, reverse engineering, and incident management with AFRIPOL’s personnel throughout the African member states, as the organization intensifies its efforts to address cybercrime continent-wide.

AFRIPOL has initiated partnerships with global, regional, and local law enforcement bodies to assist African police forces in addressing transnational organized crime, terrorism, and cybercrimes. The past year was marked with the completion of the highly successful Africa Cyber Surge operation organized jointly by AFRIPOL and INTERPOL Support Program for the African Union in relation to AFRIPOL (ISPA), a multinational cybercrime suppression initiative focused on identifying cybercriminals and compromised infrastructure in Africa. During the four-month operation, Group-IB provided timely cyber threat intelligence to facilitate cooperation between INTERPOL’s Cybercrime Directorate, AFRIPOL and African countries. Several key results of the operation included amongst others the arrest of 10 individuals linked to scam and fraud activities worth $800,000, the takedown by the authorities in Eritrea of a darknet market that was selling hacking tools, and action taken against more than 200,000 pieces of malicious infrastructure that was facilitating cybercrime across Africa.

The execution of this Memorandum of Understanding comes after a fruitful collaboration among Group-IB, AFRIPOL, and the African Union (AU), during which Group-IB supplied intelligence on threats, support for investigations, and efficient services for ad-hoc incident responses. The collaboration will lead to the development and execution of shared initiatives by Group-IB and AFRIPOL, focusing on the surveillance of cyber threats, the prevention of scam and phishing activities, the tracking of compromised payment details, the enhancement of cyber threat awareness, and, naturally, apprehension efforts—all aimed at a singular objective: combating cybercrime.

The Acting Executive Director of AFRIPOL, Jalel Chelba, stated, “Africa is witnessing the fastest growth in internet and mobile telephony at present. This digital expansion offers numerous advantages to African nations while simultaneously making them vulnerable to cybercriminals who exploit cyberspace for illicit activities. Therefore, combating cybercrime necessitates robust collaboration among all relevant stakeholders, both from the public and private sectors. Such partnerships are crucial for enhancing the capabilities of AFRIPOL’s Member States to dismantle criminal networks and build protection at individual, organizational, and societal levels.” He further noted that this MoU with GROUP-IB “initiates a collaboration that will empower African countries to tackle cybercrime with greater effectiveness and efficiency, thereby boosting confidence in the African cyberspace.”

“An agreement with AFRIPOL is a major milestone in Group-IB’s history as it allows us to further extend our mission of fighting cybercrime on the African continent,” comments Dmitry Volkov, CEO and co-founder of Group-IB. “The Middle East and Africa region has been a key focus for the company. We established our Middle East & Africa Digital Crime Resistance Center in Dubai in 2021. As a private sector partner of INTERPOL, Group-IB was involved in multiple INTERPOL-led operations targeting scammers in the region, including Nervone, Falcon I and II, Delilah, and Lyrebird. During these initiatives, our team helped to track down and identify the cybercriminals involved in massive BEC and phishing operations worldwide. By pooling our expertise, resources, and knowledge, AFRIPOL and Group-IB we will be able to create a safer cyberspace in Africa.”

“Group-IB’s agreement with AFRIPOL underscores our commitment to Africa and solidifies our company as a cornerstone in the region’s cybersecurity defense. We are looking forward to building upon our track record of successful collaborations with law enforcement agencies on the continent by investing in the region and expanding our presence, centered on high-quality education and offering our sector-leading incident response and digital forensics capabilities. This signifies not only our dedication, but also our confidence in the immense potential for growth in Africa,” Ashraf Koheil, Group-IB’s Regional Sales Director META, said.