Freezes over 300 Bank Accounts in Moves to Further Save Naira

•Says Nigeria accounts for 50 per cent of global cybercrime perpetrators

•Banks lose N8bn to electronic transfer in 2022

Chairman of EFCC, Ola Olukoyede, yesterday, disclosed that the commission had frozen more than 300 bank accounts since Monday to defend the naira against another fatal attack.

Olukoyede, who spoke in Abuja while briefing journalists, said a report by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for the year ending 2022 indicated that Nigerian banks lost N8 billion to cybercrimes in the year.

He added that the NCC report indicated that Nigeria was losing $500 million annually to cybercrimes.

Olukoyede, while addressing the recent appreciation of forex, said apart from fighting corruption and financial crimes, the commission was also looking at working on areas that would stimulate the economy.

He held that such efforts informed the recent decision of the commission to intervene in the forex manipulation activities and a planned attack on the naira, leading to the resolve to freeze over 300 accounts on Monday

Speaking on the latest efforts of the commission to fight financial crimes, he explained that the agency was introducing some reform agenda to ensure that the looting of government resources was prevented.

He said the push for prevention of looting must start with the investigation of processes and procedures of government.

The EFCC chair stated that the NCC report for the year ending 2022 had already indicated that Nigerian banks lost N8 billion to cybercrimes in the year. He added that the commission was awaiting the 2023 report.

Olukoyede maintained that 71 per cent of the country’s industries reported one form of cyber-attack or the other in the year, adding that Nigeria as a whole lost $706 million to cybercrimes in 2022.

He argued that while the FBI reported that between 2018 and 2021, Africa was responsible for 60 percent of the global cybercrime perpetrators, Nigeria was responsible for 50 per cent of that number.

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