LASCOPA Seeks Innovative Solutions to Consumer Protection

The General Manager, Lagos State Consumer Protection Agency (LASCOPA), Afolabi Solebo Solebo highlighted the increasing sophistication of cyber threats and called for innovative solutions to protect and enhance consumers’ confidence in bank transactions.

Solebo made the call in a Panel Discussion at the 2024 Quarter II Industry forum organised by the Committee of E-Business Industry Heads (CeBIH), themed: “Cybercrime: Enhancing Consumer Trust and Security with Artificial Intelligence”, held recently at Radisson Blu Anchorage Hotel, Victoria Island Lagos.

He noted the growing concerns surrounding cybercrime and emphasised the critical role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in enhancing consumer trust, particularly in the realm of digital banking.

“Cybercrime is evolving at an unprecedented rate, posing significant risks to consumers, especially in the digital banking sector. To effectively combat these threats, we must leverage advanced technologies like AI to safeguard consumer interests”.

Solebo stressed the importance of transparency and education in building consumer confidence in AI-driven security solutions. “Consumers need to understand how AI works to protect their data. This involves clear communication from financial institutions about the benefits and safeguards associated with AI technologies”.

“By demystifying AI and demonstrating its effectiveness, we can foster a higher level of trust among users. This proactive approach is essential for maintaining the integrity of digital banking services and ensuring consumer trust”, he added.

Solebo also called for increased collaboration between financial institutions, technology providers, and regulatory bodies to create a robust cybersecurity framework, adding that they must work together to develop and implement standards that ensure the safe and ethical use of AI in digital banking. “Our collective efforts will not only protect consumers but also enhance the overall resilience of our financial systems”, he stated.

The General Manager also highlighted successful case studies where AI has been deployed to protect consumers in digital banking, citing reduced fraud incidents and improved user experiences. These success stories, according to him, underscore the potential of AI to transform cyber security. However, we must remain vigilant and continuously improve our technologies to stay ahead of cybercriminals”.

Mr. Solebo reaffirmed the agency’s commitment to protecting consumers and promoting trust in digital banking. “Our mission is to ensure that every Nigerian can bank online with confidence, knowing their data is secure. AI is a powerful tool in this mission, and we will continue to champion its responsible and effective use”, he said.

Earlier in her opening remarks, the Chairman, Committee of E-Business Industry Heads (CeBIH), Mrs. Celestina Appeal said the forum was constituted to bring together the upper echelon of electronic industry practitioners in all Nigerian banks and stakeholders alike to discuss crucial topics relating to the industry to provide safety in the digital payment system for consumers both online and physical.

Mrs. Appeal noted that the increasing rate of cybercrime which could be life-threatening as it cuts across all through phishing, data breaches, ransomware, identity amongst others, hence the need for all parties concerned to come together towards ensuring that the integrity of the financial space is protected by leveraging on tools available.

Also, in his presentation, Mr. Obi Ebuka, Chief Executive Officer, Autogon AI outlined how AI can revolutionize cyber security practices, offering real-time threat detection and adaptive security measures that traditional methods can not match. “AI-driven systems can analyze vast amounts of data quickly, identifying unusual patterns and potential threats before they can cause harm”.

Ebuka stressed that the panel discussion further underscored the importance of innovation and collaboration in addressing the challenges of cybercrime. As digital banking continues to grow, the integration of AI in cyber security practices promises a safer and more trustworthy digital environment for all consumers.

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