NDPC Investigates Alleged Privacy Breach At NIMC

The National Commissioner, of Nigeria Data Protection Commission (NDPC), Dr Vincent Olatunji, has ordered a full-scale investigation regarding allegations of unauthorized access to enrollees’ personal data in the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) database.

According to a press release signed by the NDPC Head of Legal, Enforcement and Regulations, Babatunde Bamigboye, said that this investigation is a further regulatory measure to be taken by NDPC in the wake of public concerns over reports of illegal access to the personal data of enrollees by a shadowy entity called XpressVerify.com.

It will be recalled that before now, NDPC has been engaging with NIMC on fostering adequacy of data protection. To this end, NDPC held a training with relevant officers of NIMC in early February 2024. This is one in a continuum of measures being put in place by the Federal Government to ensure data privacy and protection.

We note that NIMC has initiated an internal investigation and it has immediately given full assurances of cooperation with NDPC to get to the root of the allegation and to review existing mediums through which any entity may lawfully verify the identity of enrollees on its platform. Furthermore, NDPC will work with relevant agencies to audit the trails of the alleged unauthorized data processing and monetization of the same, and those who are found culpable for violating the Nigeria Data Protection Act, 2023 will be brought to justice.

The National Commissioner further directed that preliminary findings of the investigation should be made public within seven days.