Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Internet: NIG harps on legitimate money making

PRESIDENT, Nigeria Internet Group (NIG), Mr. Lanre Ajayi, has advised Nigerian internet users to apply Information Technology (IT) tools positively for give a boost to the country’s image and to make legitimate money.

NIG is a non-profit organization channeling its strengths on positive application of the Internet in the country.

Ajayi who also presides over PiNet Informatics as its chief executive gave this advice in a chat with ITRealms Online in Lagos, and said that there are tremendous opportunities for people to make money genuinely online.

“I would advise Nigerians to explore better ways of using the internet. Honestly, the internet offers tremendous opportunities for people to make money. Genuine money is being made on the internet, but the problem is lack of awareness, and this has been what leads people to the criminal use of the internet,” he said.

The internet, NIG president said, offers fantastic opportunities to make genuine money.

He pointed out that big enterprises are daily emerging on the internet and cited for example, the Yahoo!, and Google of this world among others.

“There are opportunities that individuals and small companies can exploit on the internet to make genuine money,” he insisted.

Ajayi also enjoined Nigerians to explore this positive side of the Internet and make their money genuinely rather than dragging the name of the nation into the mud with their individual bad tendencies.

“So, I would advise Nigerians to explore the positive use of the internet. There’s much money to be made genuinely on the internet, than the amount being made from the negative activities,” he maintained.

NIG, he noted, is an advocacy group that has not failed to use any avenue or platform available to make known its goals to the populace in the country.

“One of our advocacy activities comprises influencing government policies,” he said.
This, he also said, NIG has done effectively by sitting at various meetings including the National Cyber crime Working Group.

“We made input into the activities of the group, which did its best particularly in coming up with the draft bill on cyber crime,” he said.

Ajayi further said that on awareness, Nigeria Internet Group has not failed to seize every opportunity to educate the public on the damage cyber crime inflicts on the national image and economy.

He condemned the delay in passing the cyber crime bill into law by the National Assembly, noting that the bill was sent by former President Olusegun Obasanjo to the National Assembly before leaving office on May 29, 2007 and up till date nothing has been heard about moving efforts to move it to the next stage.

“The bill till date has not been passed into law. This is a challenge facing the fight against cyber crimes in the country. Sometimes, when law enforcement agencies arrest cyber criminals, they have difficulties prosecuting them due to insufficient laws. This is what the draft bill on cyber crimes is to tackle,” he said.

NIG, therefore called on President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua to step-up his administration’s campaign against the ugly trend to save the nation the increasingly bad image.

Nigeria, he said, should involve a tripod strategy to overcome cyber crime, underscoring the need for the establishment of a legal framework.

“This is what the draft bill on cyber crime before the National Assembly intends to do,” he said, stressing that there is also a need for co-operation among stakeholders, including the provision of technical solutions by the operators in the sector.

“This will make life more difficult for the criminals in the community,” he said, stressing, there is a need to institute public awareness campaign on the dangers of cyber crimes.

The aforementioned three ways are the fundamental means to curb the menace of cyber crimes in the country, though the trio options are not exclusive.

Describing them as strategies that have to be combined together to fight the menace, saying that if Nigeria is able to combine these strategies, then it would amount to a level of seriousness on combating the menace

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