Chief Operating Officer of NiRA, Mr. Ope Odusan
Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), the body managing Nigeria’s country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD), the dot ng domain name, has called on the Federal Government to establish local Internet Protocol (IP) Registry for the country.
The call, according to NiRA, became necessary in order to address the menace of cybercrime, and to redeem Nigeria’s battered image in the eyes of international communities.
Chief Operating Officer of NiRA, Mr. Ope Odusan, who made the call, told THISDAY in an interview that Nigerians were facing a lot of rejections while trying to shop online or buy content with their MasterCard, just because the country’s IP address has been profiled by international communities and in the process, they block all financial transactions with MasterCard that originates from Nigeria.
Odusan who lamented the situation, said Nigeria was losing billions of Naira to eCommerce in the process, since people were denied online transactions.
He explained that the way out of the difficult situation, was for government to partner NiRA, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Ministry of Communications Technology and relevant stakeholders, to establish a local IP Registry with fortified database that would be accessible to all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) that must register with IP Registry. He further explained that it would become easier to trace and track fraudulent online transactions coming from Nigeria, through the local IP Registry.
“Once it is established, fraudsters will be afraid to transact fraudulent online businesses, since they will be aware they will be traced and arrested,” Odusan said.
He warned that even government IP addresses could be denied by international communities, if the challenge was addressed.
Asked who will be responsible for managing the local IP Registry when established, Odusan suggested that NiRA could handle it, since it currently has the responsibility of managing the nations’ country code Top Level Domain Name, which is the dot ng domain name for Nigeria in cyberspace.
According to him, he personally raised the issue of local IP Registry for Nigeria at the recently concluded stakeholders’ meeting on Nigeria Internet Governance Forum (NIGF) in Abuja, where the audience applauded it and captured it in the communiqué that will be taken as part of Nigeria’s agenda for discussion at the forth coming Internet Governance Forum (IGF), holding in Baku, Azerbajan on November 23, 2012.
Worried by the profiling of Nigeria’s IP address by international communities, which he said they have used over time to blackmail the generality of Nigerians, just because of a handful of corrupt Nigerians, Odusan said the local IP Registry would redeem Nigeria’s already battered image, and open opportunities for clean online business of choice, from any online shopping centres.