The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has said it will ensure adequate protection of the coronavirus data collected by authorities at Nigeria’s borders.
The agency said in a statement that it will also ensure that the rights of data subjects to privacy are secured in line with the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR).
The statement said: ‘’The general public is aware that the world is currently faced with a pandemic called COVID-19 and global authorities have been working in concert to defeat this global threat. Nigeria is one of the countries that has become the cynosure of all eyes for how it has managed to keep this and other similar situations under check.
‘’As part of containment strategies, authorities at our entry ports have devised ingenious means of collecting health information from passengers arriving Nigeria. Their processes include a lot of personal data collection, such as travel history, name, address, phone number, email, destination etc.
‘’It is therefore expedient to evaluate the implication of this personal data collection on the rights of data subjects to privacy. The NDPR Article 2.2 provides for the basis of processing personal data. Among the bases are: consent, legitimate interest, contractual agreement, legal, public and vital interest. The data processing being done by public health officials to contain the COVID-19 pandemic is covered under VITAL and PUBLIC interest of the data subject and other Nigerians. This position is further reinforced by the provisions of Section 45 of the Nigerian Constitution which limits the right to privacy granted in Section 37.’’