Nigeria rolls out national digital identification

Nigeria is implementing a presidential directive requiring harmonisation of all data held in government registries such as driving licences, ID cards and passports. Government officials reported that the body charged with administration of the identification data, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC),  has already registered that 37 million Nigerians. The harmonisation also includes registration of SIM cards where mobile network operators are collecting biometric data of their subscribers for verification.

While many government and private agencies collect personal data, Nigeria does not yet have a privacy law. The Senior Special Adviser to the President on Information, Communication and Technology, Lanre Osibona, announced that plans were underway to enact a data protection framework.

Under the current harmonisation of identification of identification programme, Nigerians whose biometrics have been captured are issued with a National Identification Number (NIN).