The Federal Government has on Wednesday approved the National Policy on the Nigerian Government Second-Level Domains to ensure transparency in governance to improve the quality of life of Nigerians.
In a Press Statement signed by Dr. Femi Adeluyi, the Technical Assistant to the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami, stated that the policy was approved during the FEC meeting on Wednesday 16 February 2022.
Pantami explained that several countries have already put policies in place to ensure that official correspondences are only conducted using approved domains and platforms in Government Institutions.
He said that the policy was developed to strengthen public confidence in the use of digital technologies and participation in the digital economy which is also in line with the implementation of the Nigerian e-Government Master Plan, approved by the Federal Executive Council in August 2018.
He added that the Master Plan of the approved policy has a vision to create a world-class open and digitalized government that connects with people to drive efficiency in public administration, the responsiveness of civil services, and transparency in governance leading to improvement of the quality of life of Nigerians.
The Minister in the statement noted that the increasing rate of cyber-related crimes has inspired countries to develop Policy instruments to effectively regulate and manage their use of Information and Communication Technologies in Government Institutions, specifically electronic correspondences within the government.
“The use of generic domains and private emails for Government businesses and correspondences impedes the identity, security, and global recognition of the Nigerian Government on the Internet.
“Furthermore, the use of private emails for government business is a major limitation to the capabilities to archive and back-up sensitive Government data thereby making it difficult to preserve historical correspondences and documents hosted on non-Government servers.
“Similarly, Government documents that should be deleted or destroyed after a period of retention are permanently hosted on unsecure servers.
“The Policy will be implemented by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy”. The statement partly read.
The statement added that the policy seeks to promote transparency in governance, protecting the Nigerian cyberspace and promotion of the Digital Nigeria agenda by the end of the year 2022, and also gives direction for the enforcement of the mandatory use of the Nigerian Government second-level domains by all Federal Public Institutions, and recommends its adoption by States and Local Governments.
Accordingly, the policy mandated all Federal Public Institutions to obtain a Nigerian Government Second-level Domain from NITDA and migrate to that platform with immediate effect, adding that the Ministry will continue to position Nigeria to leverage technology in order to transform it into a sustainable and secure digital economy.