FGN not interested in surveillance of Internet Users – NCC official


sylvanus_ehikioyaDr Sylvanus Ehikioya, Director, New Media and Information Security with Nigerian Communications Commission, said the Federal Government was not interested in the surveillance of citizens on the Internet.

Ehikioya made the statement in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Aba, Abia, on Tuesday.

“Nigeria is not a police state and government is not considering carrying out surveillance on its citizens. The freedom of expression of its citizens as guaranteed by the constitution is sacrosanct.

“Government is not interested in spying on her citizens but government is interested in doing what is right to ensure that citizens are free to use the Internet and is safe in doing so,” he said.

Ehikioya said although the monitoring of citizens in some countries was a means for checking Internet crime, “such option is not being considered by the Nigerian Government.’’

He said that the effort to check Internet fraud was an ongoing effort which would involve the use of the Cyber Security law, which could not be perfected without the passage of the bill into law.

Ehikioya said that Nigeria would rather collaborate with other countries to check Internet crime than to monitor the citizens.

He said that since cyber crime cut across boundaries, which meant that there were different governments with jurisdiction in cyber governance, thus requiring collaboration to check the problem.

The director said that countries must make provisions in their laws to collaborate with other countries to check cyber crimes.

Ehikioya said that measures were being taken to create appropriate frameworks and guidelines in Nigeria to facilitate collaboration with other countries against cyber crime.

He, however, said that for a country, such as Nigeria, to collaborate with other countries, the appropriate framework, such as the Cyber Security Bill pending at the National Assembly must be passed into law.


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