NDPC highlights data protection role in digital economy

National Commissioner/Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Data Protection Commission (NDPC), Dr Vincent Olatunji, shed light on the significance of data protection in the digital economy at the pre-launch of the National Privacy Awareness Campaign.

Speaking at the ’50 Most Valuable Personalities in Nigeria’s Digital Economy Conference and Award’ in Lagos, Olatunji emphasised the crucial role data protection plays in fostering a thriving digital economy.

He highlighted the commitment of NDPC to raising awareness among citizens as it concerns ensuring compliance with the Nigeria Data Protection Act 2023.

He said: “We firmly believe that awareness is a pre-condition for compliance and the ability of all operators including Licensed Data Protection Compliance Organisations (DPCOs) to effectively do their tasks as prescribed by the law – Nigeria Data Protection Act 2023. Therefore, I want to recommend the Nigerian Stakeholders for Data Protection Awareness (NSDPA) to reach out for support of associations such as the Association of Licensed Data Protection Organisations of Nigeria (ALDAPCOº0N) as critical stakeholders in the data protection ecosystem.

“What we expect in the weeks and months ahead is that the message of data protection will begin to run deep in corporate Nigeria and rural settlements and semi-urban centres across the country.”

The National Privacy Awareness Campaign is anchored by the NSDPA.

The pre-launch ceremony, which held as part of the highlights of the 50 MVPS event, attracted stakeholders from various sectors, including the leadership and members of prominent associations such as the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) and the ALDAPCON.

Olatunji highlighted the necessity of awareness as a precursor to compliance, stressing the importance of collaboration with critical stakeholders like ALDAPCON to enhance data protection practices across corporate Nigeria and local communities.

The Zonal Coordinator of the NSDPA, Sani Ahmed Yaro, shared plans for a national campaign aimed at educating every Nigerian on data privacy. He was represented by Delmwa Gogwim, a senior executive of the NSDPA.

Chairman of ALDAPCON, Ivan Anya, echoed similar sentiment, affirming the pivotal role of awareness in optimising the functions of licensed DPCOs.

Also, Prof Nentawe Goshwe Yilwatda presented insights on Nigeria’s digital economy and opportunities for young people. He highlighted the transformative potential of emerging technologies like the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and robotics in revolutionizing various sectors.

Yilwatda noted that Nigeria has a good chance to leapfrog its economy by leveraging the unfolding opportunities in the technology realm.

His words: “The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) presents a transformative opportunity for Nigeria to harness the power of emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and robotics to revolutionize various sectors, from agriculture and healthcare to manufacturing and security.”

Yilwatda, a scholar and politician, said Nigeria must intentionally prepare its youths for the vast opportunities in the digital economy.

He said “Some of the opportunities available for young people in the digital economy space are a fertile ground for young entrepreneurs to launch innovative startups and digital businesses. From e-commerce ventures and fintech solutions to digital content creation and marketing.

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