A Nigerian agency known as the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has released the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation to regulate and control the use of data in the Country.

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The agency’s director general, Isa Ibrahim, presented the regulation at a press conference on Friday. He said the regulation was issued in line with the powers of the agency under its enabling law,

The NITDA boss said, by its establishment law of 2007, NITDA is empowered to develop, regulate and advise the government on information technology, in addition to serving as an IT legislator.

Mr Ibrahim said the data protection regulation was formulated in consonance with provisions of Section 6(c) of the NITDA Act which provides the agency with the powers to “issue regulations and monitor the use of electronic communications on all matters pertaining to government, commerce, and the private and public”.

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Mr Isa Patanmi the Director general of the NITDA

The recently released regulation can be described as a copy of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) a regulation in EU law on data protection and privacy for all individuals within the European Union and the European Economic Area. Unlike the NITDA regulations on data protection, the GDPR is a legislation which has been codified by EEA member states.

The regulation further expects public and private organizations in Nigeria that control data of natural persons shall within 3 months after the date of the issuance of this Regulation make available to the general public their respective data protection Policies. The timeline for the implementation of the regulation across Nigeria is very short which is unlike the GDPR that granted a timeline of least two years before becoming enforceable.

The regulations would therefore affect Internet intermediaries such as Google, Microsoft, Truecaller, facebook, twitter, Yahoo, Spectranet, Main one and other major and minor internet companies. Blogs and other smaller websites would also be affected by this regulation.

You can download the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation 2019 here

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