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How Cyber Security Expert Mohammad Zahid Stanikzai is Revolutionizing Internet Access in Afghanistan

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Technology has become increasingly important in economic development in recent years. The
internet revolution is at the center of technological change. For the past decade, the expansion of
electronic work has been explosive and has completely changed the business world and how
companies are functioning. In this day and age, countries, especially developing countries, have
to embrace technology or else risk being left behind in development. Indeed, technology is the
future.


Realizing the importance of technology, tech guru Mohammad Zahid Stanikzai has been
innovative in the digital world. Being the head of Cyber Security at the Ministry of Communication
and IT in Afghanistan, Mohammad has been critical in building the framework for electronic
technology nationwide.


Among many challenges Afghanistan faces, the issue of the communication sector has been one.
On this realization, Mr. Mohammad came up with a dynamic plan to spur internet connectivity
regime in the country. He collaborated with owners of private companies intending to sign an
agreement with the Ministry of Communication and Information technology for brining all the
private sector ISP companies under Internet Exchange Platform (NIXA).


The country has experienced immense network growth from its brilliant innovative idea compared
to what it had before. The use of the internet in Afghanistan has quickly expanded across the
country. With companies joining the Internet Exchange Center or NIXA, the internet quality has
greatly increased, and the services are available at an affordable price to all Afghans. The
communications are centralized and also localized. The platform helped other major companies
like Facebook, Google, and Netflix to invest with Cache servers and host platforms through this
interconnections.


Thanks to his commendable tech abilities, Mohammad Zahid is credited for the expansion of
electronic and mobile government services to its citizens. Private firms have started offering
electronic mobile money transfer services. Also, necessary information about agricultural markets
and health services is accessible using mobile networks and devices.


Under his leadership, the ministry aims to bring together at least 60 internet service providers
through NIXA. This bid has been boosted by the signing of an agreement with two leading
companies: Insta Telecom and AGG. With the two companies working under NIXA, there will be
information connectivity, and most importantly, securing personal information among the users.
Due to his expertise, Mohammad is a part of a six-member committees which are established by
Ministry of communication and IT. The committee is tasked with implementing a five-year plan in
MCIT and following all the activities. Their main responsibility is to effectively adapt, control, and
implement the ICT report and roadmap.


Mr. Mohammad also established a centralized and responsive team unit for cyber space of
Afghanistan. AFCERT is defensive team of afghan government for all cyber related crimes. This
team is equipped by advance forensic laboratories which was all inaugurated by Mr. Mohammad
Zahid. He has been key person for the cyber space law and panel code of the country. He worked
closely with other working groups of government for centralizing and expansion of cyber space
regime for the country.


Mohammad’s brilliant ideas could not have come at a better time than amid the current COVID-19
pandemic. With people losing jobs due to the global economic recession, many people have been
left stranded. Further, those who are still working have been encouraged to work remotely from
their homes. In Afghanistan, younger people who are tech-savvy have established innovative
enterprises that use information communication technology.


As much as there is more to be done, the expansion of telecommunication has greatly benefited
the citizens and the government. The government has been able to raise revenues from
telecommunication expansion. Services such as electronic banking services enable the
government to monitor the movement of money for tax purposes.


As a trailblazer in his industry, Mohammed Zahid Stanikzai has shown the way for the
revolutionization of technology. For countries to experience real economic growth, they have no
option but to embrace modern technology.


With the revolution of tech industry and mobile usage within the youths of Afghanistan. Mr.
Mohammad establish a startup where it simplifies services provide on-demand home services
through mobile application within the country. this initiative helps people during the pandemic and
also the current security situation of Afghanistan. Mobile application helps people to explore
services online and select best required service with time and day. This creates hundreds of job
opportunities. Mr. Mohammad through his entrepreneurial skills creates technology related
startups and involve youths to work, study and also develop skills.

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