Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Nigeria May Contest Updated WhatsApp Privacy Policy If … – Pantami

The Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami

Nigeria has indicated it may contest the newly updated WhatsApp Privacy Policy if it fails to comply with the Nigeria Data Protection Regulations (NDPR).

The Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami made this known in a statement signed by his technical assistant on Information Technology (IT), Dr. Femi Adeluyi and made available to journalists at the weekend.

It said the minister’s attention had been drawn to the updated WhatsApp messaging application privacy policy which says it will share information about the users on their platform with their parent company (Facebook) as well as other Facebook companies. 

“The information includes user phone numbers, transaction data, service-related information, information on how you interact with others (including businesses) when using our services, mobile device information, your IP address. Furthermore, WhatsApp has indicated that users who refuse to accept their revised privacy policy risk not being able to use the service at all,” it said.

 The statement said the controversial updated policy which exempted European region from its provisions was also being contested in a number of countries, adding the nation was planning interface with Facebook to study and understand the policy and what it means to Nigerians.

“The Federal Government released the Nigeria Data Protection Regulations (NDPR) in 2019 and is committed to upholding the data privacy of Nigerians. We are also aware that the European region is exempt from the provisions of the updated policy and it is also being challenged in a number of countries. 

“The Honourable Minister has therefore directed the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) as the regulator of the information technology sector, to engage vigorously with Facebook to understand the processes, level of security, etc of the data of Nigerian users in order to ensure that policies proposed for Nigeria strictly adhere to the provisions of NDPR,” it added. 

The statement assured Nigerians that the government would give utmost attention to the privacy of their data, in line with the NDPR and the National Digital Economy Policy for a digital Nigeria.

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