Do Your Part #BeOnlineBeSmart

Gole Andrew Dec. 7, 2021

You should feel a sense of security whenever you access the internet through your device. As much as there are risks associated with using the internet, everyone has the power to take personal measures to guard themselves against online threats. In this cyber security awareness month, we encourage you to #BeOnlineBeSmart, and ‘Do Your Part’ in making the internet safe for you and everyone.


October being a cyber-security awareness month, Encrypt Uganda in partnership with the Internet Society Uganda Chapter ran a 4-weeks campaign aimed at empowering individuals and organisations to own the role in protecting their cyberspace. The campaign ran under the theme “Do Your part, #BeOnlineBeSmart”.

Why Cyber Security matters

With the increased reliance on the internet, data protection and privacy against cyber threats is a concern for every user of the internet ranging from individuals, small businesses to corporate entities. Cyber security, therefore, provides the needed security on the internet to prevent malicious attacks aimed at gaining unauthorized access to sensitive or confidential data of a user or organisation.

About the “Do Your Part, #BeOnlineBeSmart” Campaign

In a bid to empower individuals and organisations to own their role in protecting their cyberspace, we highlighted the best cyber security practices with a specific focus on general practices that ensure data protection and privacy. Further emphasis was put on fighting phishing where we stressed the importance of being wary of emails, text messages or chat boxes from unsolicited sources.

Week 1: Best Security Practices


Cyber security is the practice of defending computers, servers, mobile devices, electronic systems, networks, and data from malicious attacks. Cyber security being every internet user’s responsibility, we highlighted the basic security practices one ought to undertake and practice;

Week 2: Fighting the Phish


Phishing involves the sending of messages while representing the said messages to be from reputable companies or persons with the intent to access confidential information.

This year we have witnessed an increase in phishing and malware attacks, most of which are targeted at civil society organizations and media practitioners. The attacks are more and very sophisticated compared to those that we saw last year.

For example, below is a tweet sent by prominent lawyer Nicholas Opio warning about a phishing attack on November 2021:

Falling for some of these phishing attacks can lead to one’s device being infected with malware like the Pegasus spyware that was recently used to target politicians, investigative journalists, and staff of the American Embassy in Kampala.

Week 3: Cyber Security Career Awareness


CyberSecurity is both in the Private & Public sectors. There aren’t many career fields that can be readily found in both the above sectors. This, therefore, means that our Cybersecurity skills can secure us jobs in either government or the private sector. Consider having a Cyber security career to build your competence in detecting and managing cybersecurity-related threats within your organizational networks.

Week 4: Security A Priority


Make cyber security a priority in your organisation and businesses, this means building security into products and processes. Cyber security shouldn’t be an afterthought.


To regulate digital spaces to instil confidence and trust in the online platforms, Uganda has the Data Protection and Privacy Act which has put strict compliance needs on businesses to ensure that they protect user data collected by them and to have a personal data protection officer that is in charge of ensuring that it complies with the Data Protection and Privacy Act.

The Computer Misuse Act has further criminalized cyber threats like cyberstalking, cyberbullying and identity theft. These are commendable efforts although more needs to be done in sensitizing the public, enforcing the existing laws and calling for more reforms as cyber threats evolve with the developments of the technology.

By Gole Andrew, Senfuma Bryan Kaye, and Andrew Wandera.