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April 14, 2024
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NDPC calls for NIN vigilance amid data breach probe

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By Ijeoma Olorunfemi

The Nigeria Data Protection Commission (NDPC) has stressed the importance of regarding the National Identification Number (NIN) as crucial data for sustainable development.

Mr Babatunde Bamigboye, Head of Legal, Enforcement, and Regulations at NDPC, made this assertion in Abuja on Thursday, addressing concerns about the alleged data breach by expressverify.com, a licensee of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).

Bamigboye highlighted that the commission was actively investigating the reported incident of unauthorised NIN verification by expressverify.com. He explained that while genuine businesses might have permitted expressverify.com to use NIN verification credentials, the circumstances surrounding this permission were still under scrutiny.

The NDPC emphasised the need for thorough scrutiny of data processing by licensees, ensuring only those compliant with regulatory standards are allowed to conduct NIN verification in the future.

Bamigboye urged the public to recognise NIN as essential data for sustainable development.

Regarding the response to the expressverify.com incident, Bamigboye noted that NIMC had temporarily restricted access to its database as part of established remediation protocols.

While recognising the impact on genuine verification requests, he said limited access was granted to establishments providing critical public services like education and security.

“Ongoing investigations aim to determine how expressverify.com obtained credentials from legitimate third parties and hold responsible parties accountable under existing laws”.

Bamigboye stressed the importance of strengthening technical and organisational measures for data protection, urging citizens to avoid sharing personal information indiscriminately online.

Bamigboye announced plans for training sessions to educate personnel and licensees on their responsibilities under the Nigeria Data Protection Act and NIMC’s Privacy Policy. (NAN) www.nannews.ng

Edited by Deji Abdulwahab

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