Ministry of Communication Calls for Collaboration in Data Security

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The Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy has stressed the need for more collaboration in the areas of data protection and privacy assessment in the country.

This was made known in a statement by the ministry during a virtual meeting with Data Analytics Privacy Technology Limited led by its Executive Director/Partner, Ambassador Segun Olugbile.

Mr. Musa Istifanus, the Permanent Secretary of the ministry expressed his gratitude to the organization for its presentation on the need to collaborate to properly assess, co-ordinate and identify the data protection and privacy risks.

The Director, Radio Monitoring and Survey at the ministry, Kilyobas Binga who spoke on behalf of the permanent secretary stated that the presentation was timely in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and global economic downturn.

He pointed out this development has required Ministries, Departments and Agencies to leverage technology through virtual/online platforms to conduct government business.

The director stated that the ministry’s e-government department and the National Information Technology Development Agency were teaming up with the Ministry of Health to craft a robust e-health policy and action plan for the country.

According to him, this will enable the Ministry of health to reach out to the public at this time of COVID-19 pandemic.

A Director at DAP, Mr. Franklin Akinsuyi, explained the importance of data protection and privacy impact assessment in the present and post COVID-19 phase during the meeting,

He highlighted the socio-economic effects of the pandemic and outlined ways to assist organizations in identifying and minimizing the data protection risks of a project/programme or system change where personal data was being processed.

“Processing data is conducted in a manner that breaches the Nigerian Data Protection Regulation and other international data protection laws.  Government institutions need to collaborate to properly assess, co-ordinate and identify the data protection and privacy risks to the population,” Akinsuyi said.

He further noted that the benefits of implementing DPIA was to improve awareness and to reduce data protection and privacy risks while executing MDA projects as well as making provision for a uniform and consistent way of assessing risks across ministries.

The Executive Director, Business Development at DAPT, Olutoyin Oloniteru, in his presentation, implored the ministry to collaborate with the Ministry of Health to drive the technology aspect of the e-health process, noting that before any technology could be deployed, there had to be impact assessment on the country’s economy.

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