Media Statement 25 May 2021
MMC Sylvester Phokoje
Human Capital Management and Shared Services
Tshwane unveils its Security Operations Centre for curbing cyber threats to the City.
Today, May 25 2021, Tshwane’s Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) responsible for Corporate and Shared Services, Cllr. Sylvester Phokoje, unveiled the municipality’s Security Operations Centre, which has been set up to proactively and reactively restrict cyber threats to the City.
The Centre, which opened in August 2019, was created in response to the urgent need to secure the City’s digital assets, using modern technology and to provide residents with a seamless experience while using City eServices such as online statements, buying electricity, and payment of utility services.
This includes implementing protective measures for confidential information such as ID numbers, addresses and banking information in line with the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI Act).
The Security Operations Centre (SOC), designed and operated by Take Note Information Technologies (Take Note IT), operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, with dedicated Cyber Response Teams that allow fast and efficient response to cyber incidents. This continuous monitoring is essential for identifying the first signs of a cyberattack that could jeopardize the City’s ability to provide services to its citizens. Take Note IT, a leading Cyber Security and Early Warning Detection System provider was founded in 2007.
The SOC was completed in December 2020 and includes a Cyber Center of Excellence for youth to learn about cyber security. In response to a cyber skills shortage in the country and beyond, more than 20 young people have been educated in both practical and soft skills.
Currently, there are around 3-4 million job vacancies in Cyber Security across the world, and the city has implemented a homegrown solution that accomplishes two goals: educating youth and equipping them with practical skills while also generating jobs.
Cyber threat management, according to MMC Sylvester Phokoje, remains essential for the City’s operations. “A SOC demonstrates to the City’s stakeholders, staff, citizens, and government that data protection and privacy are essential to us. It’s worth noting that the SOC has successfully investigated over 4,000 cyber incidents to date. We’ve also handled nearly 150 phishing attacks, giving our citizens a sense of security and peace of mind.” “
Take Note IT leverages the best software engineering and process expertise to provide value-added services to the City, with over 15 years of experience in cyber security. “SOCs are responsible for more than just event detection. Our cyber experts’ threat hunting and research help to prevent attacks from happening in the first place.
To date, we’ve decreased the costs of breaches and operations. By minimizing the amount of time a cyber attacker lurks in an enterprise’s network, the SOC team handles incidents rapidly thereby reducing downtime,” says Mamela Luthuli, CEO and Founder of Take Note IT.