Consulting firm opens first ever Cyber Immersion Centre in Nairobi

13 March 2018 3 min. read

Kenya-based IT and business advisory firm Serianu has opened a Cyber Immersion Centre in Nairobi; the first institute of its kind in Africa. The centre will serve two primary purposes; the provision of an experimental environment for firms to test their cyber security capabilities, and the provision of educational facilities for professionals.

Now a poignant reality across the globe, cyber-security has become a field in itself for professional services and academic research. Cyber attacks are getting increasingly frequent, and are highly versatile in their targets, ranging from major credit institutions in the US to the national health insurance scheme in the UK.

In terms of cyber-security, Africa may be something of a land-mine. The continent is set to have widespread digital access over the next few years, and will be increasingly conducting financial activities online. However, new internet-users bring with them the risk of being unaware of cyber-threats, making them susceptible to potentially devastating attacks.

There is a call for cyber-awareness on the continent, and Kenyan consulting firm Serianu has responded. Characterised as a pan-African firm, Serianu is an information-based consultancy with a unique offering of ‘information enablement.' In essence, while access to information is one thing, it requires skill and knowhow to utilise information in an analytical and effective manner, which is where Serianu steps in with analytical expertise.

Consulting firm opens first ever Cyber Immersion Centre in Nairobi

The firm’s offerings include: a technology advisory arm, which includes cloud consulting and related services; an information security and risk vertical, which offers holistic and safe information management techniques, and; information intelligence and analytics, which can be used for business transformation and restructuring.

Now, the firm has stamped its presence in the African cyber-security arena, with the establishment of its Cyber Emersion Centre. The centre offers training facilities in cyber-security to organisations from the private and public sectors with a space to train in cyber-security capabilities.

In addition, the wealth of expertise at the centre will offer experienced cyber-security professionals the opportunity and resources to test their skills and capabilities. As explained by Joseph Mathenge, Chief Operating Officer at Serianu, the “Cyber Immersion Centre is a hybrid between an advanced cyber range and an educational institute.”

Perhaps the most prominent of advantages that the centre offers is cost-effectiveness. Currently, due to their dependence on training modules from the west, technical training programmes in the cyber-security domain cost an average of $3000. At the new Cyber Immersion Centre, technical training in cyber-security will cost $1000.

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