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Nigerians alerted on new EU’s data protection guidelines



The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has alerted Nigerian businesses on the implications of a new European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regu- lation (GDPR).


According to the agency, the alert on the has become necessary as it might have huge impact on Nigerian businesses and/or individuals that use Information Technologies to collect, store, process and transact on EU citizens personal data in EU territory or elsewhere.


NITDA in a statement, called on Nigerian businesses, especially those carrying out online transactions and meet the GDPR compliance criteria to put in place appropriate measures to observe the provisions of this regulation to avoid being sanctioned for a liable breach.



Organisations are also required to note the provisions of the NITDA Guidelines on Data Protection, issued in 2013 and currently being revised. In an effort to make the agency’s rule making process transparent and industry-focused, NITDA said the revised guideline will soon be presented for stakeholder consultation as stipulated in the Rule making Process Regulation of NITDA.



The new GDPR particularly concerns those that collect, store and process personal data of EU citizens for the provision of goods and services.


The GDPR (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) is a regulation by which the European Parliament, the Council of the EU and the European Commission intend to strengthen and unify data protection for all individuals within the European Union (EU). Explaining the implementation of the GDPR, Director General of NITDA, Dr. Isa Pantami, said though the implementation has commenced, 25th of May 2018 is the day that all data protection arrangements in companies have to be changed accordingly.



“It does not only affect European businesses, but every company or enterprise that processes personal data of European citizens,” Pantami said.


He explained the general principles of processing personal data require that it is processed transparently.


He said : “It is in the utmost interest of the agency to protect Nigerian businesses from unnecessary exposure to the risks of this regulation and/ or any regulations that might have negative impact on their businesses as well as the rights of Nigerians that have dual citizenship of any EU member state.”

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