Agency cautions Nigerians against Truecaller Service 

By Na’ankwat Dariem, Abuja

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The National Information Technology Agency, NITDA says over seven million Nigerians who are active users of the Truecaller service are potentially at risk of breach of their privacy rights.

 

Initial findings revealed that the Truecaller Privacy Policy is not in compliance with global laws on data protection and the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) in particular. Hence the need to enlighten the public on some of the areas of non-compliance as well as guide those affected.


”The attention of the National Information Technology Agency (NITDA) has been drawn to the potential breach of privacy rights of Nigerians by the Truecaller Service,” the Director-General of the Agency Mr. Kashifu Inuwa said in a statement.


The Agency, in accordance with Section 6(f) of the NITDA Act 2007, which empowers it to render advisory services in all information technology matters to the public and private sectors, wish to inform the public that it commences investigation of the potential breach.

According to the statement, NITDA  assured Nigerians of its commitment to monitor the activities of digital service providers and protect against the breach of rights of Nigerians.

 

The agency also reiterated its commitment to improving the operational environment to support ethical players in their bid to get maximum benefit from Nigeria.

 

NITDA also noted that ”the provisions of the policy can be exploited to put many Nigerians in unsavoury conditions and advised members of the public to delist themselves from the Truecaller Service completely.”

 

In view of this, we urge all Nigerians to take advantage of Article 4 of the Truecaller Privacy Policy which provides , ‘If any persons do not wish to have their names and phone numbers made available through the Enhanced Search or Name Search functionalities, they can exclude themselves from further queries by notifying Truecaller via its website at www.truecaller.com.”

 

True caller is a smartphone application which has features of caller-identification, call-blocking, flash-messaging, call-recording, Chat & Voice which uses the internet. The service requires users to provide a standard cellular mobile number for registering with the service.

 

Mercy Chukwudiebere