The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has stated that multi-stakeholder approach where all necessary stakeholders within the telecommunications ecosystem play their respective roles will help in minimizing Internet users’ exposure to the risks and dangers of cybercrime.
Felicia Onwuegbuchulam, director, Consumer Affairs Bureau at NCC, stated this during the 108th edition of the NCC’s Consumer Outreach Programme (COP) held at the Imo State University, Owerri with the theme “Mitigating Effects of Cybercrimes: The Role of Telecom Consumers.”
Onwuegbuchulam said that from a regulatory perspective, the NCC has devoted the theme of its COP and the Consumer Town Hall Meeting (CTM) alike to creating awareness for consumers on what they needed to do to be protected while online as well as developing an Internet Industry Code of Practice for Internet Service Providers to address issues of online privacy and data protection and child protection among others.
She stated that, as the NCC continues to champion increased Internet availability, accessibililty and affordability, the regulator was also conscious of those who dishonestly and dubiously use the Internet to commit crimes rather than for positive motives, making consumers of telecom services vulnerable to the antics of cybercriminals.
“So, aside what NCC is doing, it is our belief, therefore, that while operators need to play their roles by fortifying their networks and sensitising their customers, consumers must play their role by using the information gained from such sensitisation to keep themselves safe online.
“The law enforcement agencies must also play their own role by getting themselves equipped with skills and tools needed to apprehend and prosecute cybercriminals and so on. In essence, we need a multi-stakeholder template to deal with the menace of cybercrime,” she said.
At the event, there was a questions and answers session between the consumers and the regulators and operators as well as a technical session by Wheel of Hope Consumer Advocacy.
Among the institutions represented at the Outreach are: the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), Nigerian Prisons Service (NPS), National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), the Nigeria Civil Service Union (NCSU), officials of Imo State Government, students, artisans and other interest groups, among others.