The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has warned Nigerians to be wary of fake websites pledging federal government COVID-19 lockdown relief funds in circulation describing it a fraud.
The IT agency in a statement by its head of Corporate Affairs and External Relations, Mrs. Hadiza Umar, on Monday and made available to THE WITNESS, says the agency’s Computer Emergency Readiness and Response Team (CERRT) identified a number of websites using various phishing tricks to attract Internet users.
“One of such tricks is misinforming the public that Federal Government has approved the disbursement of funds under a fictitious vote called “Lockdown Funds. It then requires the user to complete an online form with their personal information including bank details for the payment to be effected.
“While NITDA is doing everything possible to shut down the websites identified as well as sanction those behind them, we call on the general public to disregard and report any such websites to the Agency for necessary action.
NITDA further advised internet users not to give out their personal information to anyone online, avoid clicking unknown links, disregard offers requesting for their bank details; and know what to do when they become victims of cybercrime.
“The agency calls on all well-meaning Nigerians to intensify their efforts in supporting the Federal Government in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. We are all encouraged to strictly adhere to the recommendations given by health experts, and follow updates from the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), and other relevant Agencies involved in the management of the pandemic,” the statement added.
NITDA is a federal government agency established in April 2001 to implement the Nigerian Information Technology Policy as well as coordinate general IT development and regulation in the country.