Sunday, September 20

NCC blasted for handing over mobile users’ data to police, others

Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN), in a bid to understand the rationale and judicial backing that were involved in the National Communications Commission (NCC)’s decision to hand over the voice data of some private citizens to the security agencies, has written a letter under the backing of the Freedom of Information (FOI) initiative to the nation’s telecoms regulator. The need for this letter was borne out of recent knowledge coming to light that on account of suspicious activity, NCC has handed over the data of some customers over various networks to security agencies to look into.

This knowledge was brought to light on the 16th of October when the Vice Chairman of the NCC in person of Umar Danbatta said at the International Trade Fair held in Abuja (and reported by ThisDay newspaper producer and news outlet) that “the commission in collaboration with telecommunication operators monitor call data of suspected kidnappers and insurgents and forward same to
appropriate security operatives as soon as they are available.”

PIN is doing all it can to ensure the privacy of citizens and their data and to curb the excesses of the NCC in violating the privacy of the citizens. Moreso, PIN had previously challenged NCC on the passing of their controversial bill titled the “Lawful interception of Communication Regulation” which has been described as just a facade for NCC to keep violating privacy laws.

Having written in support of its first FOI request to state details of the enquiry, the NCC is required to sent PIN a reply within seven days as allocated in the FOI bill.

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