The Institute of Information Management (IIM) has urged the Nigerian legislature to pass into law the bill for data protection. The group charged the Senate to focus more on passing the bill into law so that culprits would be punished.
IIM made this appeal during the Data Privacy Day held in order to proffer solutions to the data privacy violations which are on the increase today and also to raise awareness of such problems.
According to the group, there are two bills relating to Data Protection in Nigeria which are yet to be passed into law. The first bill was proposed in 2008 while the second one was proposed in 2010.
As explained by the President and Chairman of the Governing Council of IIM Africa, Dr. Oyedokun Oyewole, data protections laws or information privacy laws forbid violation of confidentiality of information or inappropriate use of information kept on a person or private entities.
According to Oyewole, Online Trust Alliance (OTA) as well as other international organizations has in 2010 kept the Data Privacy as data privacy and protect day.
He regrettably observed that Nigeria embraced the information and communication technology which has made the world a global village without understanding the meaning and legal basis upon which those technologies are hinged. He pointed out the disparity between the rate at which information technology and its legal understanding are growing. The legal pace of the technology for him is still crawling when compared with the spread technology itself.
He advised Nigerians to stop data abuse. He highlighted on the need for a review of the long-term effect on data collection and use of consumers’ data as well as protection practices.
The IIM President said that a wide range of information is collected electronically by both businesses and their customers with the belief that these piece of information is kept secure and confidential.
Customers according to him have concern for confidentiality of data which as he said should spark off laws and regulations guiding the type of information to be stored, where and how transmission of information can be carried out and what should be done when there is a breach of security.
Dr Oyewole noted that there were 14 countries in the content that have established both the data protection authorities and privacy framework while only seven countries in the continent have bills for data protection. These countries include Nigeria, Niger, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Mali and Madagascar.
IIM he said would want industry leaders and stakeholders to fully comprehend the danger of threats to privacy and how the issues can be solved.