Access to Information and Public Services Delivery: User Perceptions of Data Integrity and Protection in Ghana (2017)

The delivery of public services is underpinned by the principle of continuity and guaranteed data validation which imposes greater responsibilities on the state as it moves into the realm of becoming a digital republic. This has created the necessity for research to gain a deeper understanding of cybersecurity challenges and to develop strategies to provide better e-governance and to attain digital sovereignty. This study assessed the level of public confidence and trust in the integrity of the systems and data that are exchanged on the e-governance platform in Ghana, with a focus on data integrity and protection. A cross-sectional survey with respondents from four regions, with high concentration of e-government services users, indicates significant weaknesses regarding issues of data integrity, continuous availability of services and confidentiality on the e-government platforms. Major challenges that need urgent attention include service exclusion as a result of no or low educational attainment, lack of a national database to verify information on the platforms, perennial lack of network or internet access to enable access to services, and unauthorised access of systems with the help of insiders. These need to be addressed in order to expand access, build confidence in the systems and to attain digital sovereignty.

Key words: Ghana, e-government, public services, digital republic, information.

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