The Nigeria Data Protection Bureau has opened an investigation into allegations of data breach by two Nigerian banks; GTB and Zenith Bank.
A statement by the bureau on Monday said the investigations were triggered by allegations of unlawful disclosure of banking records to a third party and unlawful access and processing of personal data.
According to the directive of the National Commissioner and CEO, NDPB, Dr Vincent Olatunji, the investigation covers the data governance practice of the banks in all their branches in Nigeria and extends to all third parties carrying out data processing activities.
The bureau notes with concern that many data privacy and protection regulations and best practices are hardly implemented down the organisational strata of major data controllers in Nigeria.
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Similarly, it enjoins organisations to heed the federal government circulars and general compliance notice directing them to send the names of their Data Protection Officers/Contacts to the bureau.
There are reports by the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) which indicated that within 9 months of 2020, fraudsters attempted 46,126 attacks and they were successful on 41,979 occasions representing 91% of the time.
“This level of vulnerability to a data breach is unacceptable and it can only be addressed through foolproof data security and data privacy measures by data controllers/data processors in the industry,” the NDPB statement signed by its head of legal enforcement and regulations, Babatunde Bamigboye, said.
It quoted the NDPB National Commissioner as enjoining all financial institutions to emulate the example of the Central Bank of Nigeria in compliance with the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) 2019 and in creating a robust data governance system.