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Nigerian government is talking tough over protection of its citizen’s data and is now ready to deal with anyone that breaches its data protection law.

The regulatory agency says multinationals like Google, Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and other popular social media platforms with offices in Nigeria now risk penalties if they breach local data privacy rules.

The Nigerian Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is now taking a tougher stance on data protection, thereby calling on organization holding private data of Nigerians to comply with its Nigeria Data Protection Regulation law (NDPR), a set of rules released last year by the regulatory agency on data privacy and related matters.

According to NITDA, its NDPR was “drafted to be pragmatic in expectation and enforcement. While the incident of foreign data breach is not in doubt, the NDPR seeks to grow its regulations and enforcement organically.”

The regulatory agency says that “most of the major data processors such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc, all have a Nigerian office.

In that regard, the enforcement of the new regulation would apply to them when in breach even outside Nigeria.”

NITDA says that “aside from Regulation, Nigeria has Mutual Legal Assistance Agreements with most countries, which would make it possible to still go after foreign data breaches if the country feels the need to do such.”

NITDA DG/CEO, Kashifu Inuwa said last year that the agency was investigating Truecaller Inc., the provider of Truecaller Smartphone Application with caller-identification, call-blocking, flash-messaging and other features, over an alleged potential breach of privacy right of Nigerians.

He further urged Nigerians to delete their accounts from Truecaller Service completely.

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