Banks in Uganda are facing a cyberattack on their systems every 39 seconds according to the Police.

The threat is calling for a heightened response from companies, Charles Mansio Twine, the head of communications at the Criminal Investigations Department, has said.

“We are asking institutions to train their people to be aware of this heightened threat, because we have learnt that, sometimes, even acts such as leaving your computers open is helping attackers. There is a need for everybody to be vigilant to guard their systems,” he said.

The development comes days after the Police launched a manhunt for hackers, who accessed the systems of a third-party company that processes phone-based transactions for MTN, Airtel and Stanbic Bank and stole billions of shillings.

The attack resulted in the temporary suspension of mobile money services in Uganda.

According to Twine, about $1.2 trillion is lost globally every year through cyberattacks. In Uganda alone, over sh11.9b was stolen in the past 18 months, according to the crime report released by the Police in March.

Often the Police has failed to apprehend the hackers as most of them operate outside the country.