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NBA strengthens fight against cryptocurrency fraudsters in Nigeria

The Cryptography Development Initiative in Nigeria (CDIN), a non-profit professional body in Nigeria, partnered with CFIN (Computer Forensic Institute of Nigeria) to pioneer Nigeria Blockchain Alliance (NBA) in October 2016.

President of CDIN Adeolu Fadele said that the initiative is a critical step in ensuring public safety by combating criminal activities on the blockchain, as well as for the growth of the blockchain industry in Nigeria. It brings together legal experts and government agencies to team up in the fight against cryptocurrency related crimes in the country, CoinTelegraph reported.

Speaking with CoinTelegraph, Fadele said that the initiative is in line with the government’s efforts to fight electronic fraud in Nigeria and to prevent fraudsters from giving the country a negative reputation in the new era of digital innovation.

Obiora Awogu, a forensic analyst at UBA Group, told CoinTelegraph that the NBA has successfully handled a number of cryptocurrency scam cases with support from banks and law enforcement agents.

“We recently set up a team to receive and confirm these scams and document and organize the evidence in a professional manner. This will also help in keeping an archive of known cryptocurrency fraudsters in the country,” he said.

Fadele also pointed out the “alarming” rate of the number of cryptocurrency scams reported within just one week of launching NBA. He appreciated the efforts made by the government in the achievement of the New Evidence Act 2011 and the Cybercrime Act 2015.

“Without these two legal provisions, the task of fighting cryptocurrency scams would have been more difficult,” Fadele said.

He further said that as government authorities may not have appropriate visibility into the activities of the unregulated ecosystems, such as cryptocurrencies, the NBA under CDIN has an important role to play. The Nigeria Blockchain Alliance is a voluntary organization that comprises primarily of youths from different walks of life, Fadele added.

“It is important to understand at this point that the Nigeria Blockchain Alliance is only a voluntary service offered by well-meaning Nigerian youths from the public and private sectors including the law enforcement agencies, cybersecurity professionals, military personnel’s, legal practitioners, forensic investigators, bankers, merchants, private companies and regulatory authorities”, he said.

In his concluding remarks, Fadele said that in the long run, the CDIN will seek to collaborate with relevant government agencies and private institutions to develop a policy framework, create awareness, discourage crime, protect the public and unlock new jobs and business opportunities in the Nigerian cryptocurrency and blockchain ecosystem.

Last month, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in collaboration with the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), established a committee to study the advantages and disadvantages of bitcoin as well as its potential as a payment method.

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