Development of an Actionable Cybersecurity Risk Management Framework for Digital Financial Services in the Developing World: Overall Approach

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January 29, 2021

Digital Financial Services (DFS) – also known as ‘mobile money’ due to the use of mobile phones as the primary access mechanism to basic financial services – have been launched around the world to achieve the financial inclusion of previously ‘unbanked’ people. They are a pivotal component for developing a digital economy in developing countries, an aspirational environment contributing to societal productivity, education, and health.

Developing countries are confronted with the difficult challenge of balancing financial integrity with financial inclusion. Cost centers, such as cybersecurity, present significant challenges to low- and middle-income countries. Compromises result in the presence of generally lower levels of cyber maturity being practiced and the potential for financial derisking remains ever present. The key to finding an equilibrium is the enhancement of existing cybersecurity levels. The stumbling block is access to the means to identify, understand, and rapidly respond to these risks.

This paper addresses how to develop and undertake a strategy towards a model cybersecurity risk management approach. We describe within a potential solution – an actionable risk management framework for cybersecurity – which accounts for the presence of several significantly different maturity levels of entities found within the DFS ecosystem.

Publication Year: 
2021

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