23-25 November 2022
The ECOWAS region is increasingly witnessing sophisticated attacks on computer systems and data. This is a growing concern for both cybersecurity professionals and law enforcement agencies, affecting all societies.
As a result, the role of specialised digital evidence and cybercrime units is increasing. Increasingly regional and international cooperation and effective intelligence sharing with national and international law enforcement units and CERT teams is of paramount importance for all parties in the criminal chain.
Through the OCWAR-C project, implemented by Expertise France, the ECOWAS Commission and the European Union aim to support all countries in the ECOWAS region by strengthening the capacity of units dedicated to the fight against cybercrime and the processing of digital evidence.
Although the region is at different levels of development on this issue, all countries in the region are committed to following regional and international standards on legislative and policy frameworks in line with the Malabo Convention and the Budapest Convention (and its recently adopted second additional protocol) on cybercrime as well as ECOWAS guidelines and strategies, and aim to strengthen their capacities and optimise their legal frameworks in line with these standards.
The effective use of these instruments will enhance cooperation, optimise their legal frameworks and enable the region to successfully fight cybercrime. As cybercrime and digital evidence place significant demands on the limited existing capacities in the region, better use of existing cooperation tools can help prioritise the work of cybercrime units.