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If you work in cyber security, or would like to advance your career, then attending conferences is an excellent use of your time.

But it’s often tricky to know which ones to attend right?

In this post I’m going to tell you about five popular cyber security conferences that take place in Africa each year.

The Africahackon Conference
Where: Nairobi, Kenya

This event takes place in Nairobi, Kenya, each year. If Africahackon taking place in another city then please share this info by dropping a comment below.

Africahackon is a one day ‘hacking’ conference and topics are a mix of defensive and offensive cyber security topics. We liked Africahackon because of its’ varied talks which certainly makes it a worthwhile event to attend if you living and working in East Africa. Kenya. among all African nations, is facing arguably the fastest rise of cyber crime, mostly in part due to the boom in the Kenyan tech sector and fast fibre-optic infrastructure. This all makes this particular Cyber Conference in Africa all the more interesting.

The organizers of this event are able to to attract some of the most talented security experts in the region and you’ll have a chance to see and hear their views about the state of IT Security through presentations, open discussions with the attendants and hands-on demonstrations. The focus is addressing cyber challenges in East Africa, so, if you are a keen infosec specialist located in the region then you can’t go too wrong with attending this event!

The organizers are keen to express the fact that they want to help new individuals start a career in cyber security, especially poignant since the demand for cyber professionals (like elsewhere in the world) is expected to soar in Africa.

CyberCon Africa
Where: Pretoria, South Africa

This event lasts for two days and, according to the organizers, is “all about bringing like-minded people to deal with the issues of cyber vulnerability and protection of all sectors from cybercrimes”. Last year CyberCon was held from 4th to 5th November so it ought to be around the same time each year but do let us know if you notice any change.

Generally, this conference is attended by many regional and international experts in the cyber field; particularly from the South African IT pool. Many of the talks presented last year were related to sourcing cyber threat intelligence and what to do if web applications and assets (such as servers or databases) are under attack.

We like CyberCon Africa because of its’ practical approach; i.e. it is very ‘hands-on’.

Key to this event (which was the case last year) is the concept of prevention from Cyber Attacks. So, if you work in cyber security and work in Cape Town, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal or Johannesburg then get yourself to Pretoria for this ‘must-attend’ South Africa Cyber Conference.

Also worth mentioning is the fact that CyberCon Africa also contributes to voting for the Community Task Force: an organization which concerns itself with discovering better ways to tackle cyber problems and threats, (there’s an excellent paper on the Cyber Security African Community Task Force here if you’re interested).

International Information Security South Africa Conference
Where: Johannesburg, South Africa

Further reinforcing the fact that South Africa is leading the way with cyber security in the region, we note that “International Information Security South Africa Conference” also takes place in SA, but this time in Johannesburg. This conference takes place each year around August (again, if our dates are a bit out of sync then let us know in the comments below and we’ll make the necessary changes. Our appreciation of this events is that it does facilitate a platform for the IT Security industry in which students, workers and experts, are all able to showcase and learn new trends in the cyber security space locally, so again, this is yet another great event to attend if you work in cyber – not least in South Africa.

A feature we like about this event is that cyber experts conduct workshops sharing their research and thoughts regarding, for instance, APT’s and importantly, the speakers also discuss possible solutions and remediation strategies. If you’ve attended this event we’d love to hear from you – please go ahead and drop us an email or a comment below.

Cyber Crime Africa Summit
Where: Kigali, Rwanda

This conference is all about cyber crime in Africa which is rapidly growing into a huge menace for all.

This regional African meet-up is all about disclosing modern ways and tactics to solve and attempt to defend national assets from cyber attacks. Industry leaders, professionals and students from around the geographical area meet at this conference to share methods and tactics in tackling cyber crime in Africa. It seems that this cyber conference takes place in Kigali each year, but we might be wrong since it does likely move around Africa.

This is an awesome event to attend and allows an excellent opportunity to network and advance your cyber career, not least if you are located in central Africa.

African Cyber Conference
Where: Gaborone, Botswana

We purposely haven’t included a link to this event because we suspect that it might be broken by the time this post has matured (the last conference website was hosted at Google Pages. If anyone reading this is aware of a new website drop a comment below and we’ll go ahead and add it.

Located fairly close to South Africa this cyber security event takes place in Botswana and, according to the organizers is held to “educate the people about the cyber security field and to help deal with cyber threats and cyber crimes.” Last year this conference attracted many well known African cyber experts and crime officials that all shared their experience and expertise with regards to the ever-evolving cyber security landscape in Africa.

The speakers at last years event discussed new cyber security African policies and strategies to detect and fight attacks.

Our sense of this conference is that the organizers place emphasis on the fact that cyber security has become a business issue rather than just a “technical issue”, which gives more reasons for the IT professionals to develop better cyber defense skills.

In Summary
Cyber security is a booming sector in Africa. If you are serious about your career then we highly recommend that you attend one of the conferences listed above. Let us know what you think and whether you have attended any of these events in Africa. We are sure that there are a bunch more cyber security conferences in Africa and we’ll certainly post any extra ones within this post, so if you know of any then please let us know.

If you’ve attended any of these events we’d love to hear from you, please drop a comment below.

Lastly, just so you know, we compile a massive list of global Cyber Security Conferences for 2016 here, so go ahead and start planning your calendar!