By Ibiyemi Mathew
The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has inaugurated a committee to monitor compliance with National Domain name policy.
In a press statement issued by Mrs. Hadiza Umar, Head, Corporate Affairs and External Relations of NITDA, the agency disclosed that this is in line with the Muhammadu Buhari administration’s drive towards economic diversification and commitment to the development of a robust digital economy.
Following the approval of the National Second Level Domain Policy on February 16, 2022, making the Nigerian Second-Level Domain mandatory for all government-owned websites and official email correspondence of all government personnel by the Federal Executive Council (FEC), the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is the implementing agency of the new policy.
Following the approval of the policy, NITDA has inaugurated a 14-man enforcement committee to monitor its implementation.
NITDA is mandated by its enabling (NITDA Act, 2007) of Second Schedule Section 6(m) to manage and administer Nigeria’s ccTLD (.ng). This power gives NITDA the authority to allocate and administer the Nigerian Government Second-Level domains on .gov.ng; .edu.ng; .mil.ng; .sch.ng and any other second-level domain name that may be approved in the future.
The new policy is expected to drastically enhance public confidence in the authenticity and security of information and other services accessed from government-owned websites.
According to the press statement, “the Federal Government’s desire through the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy is to move all its information and services online on the Nigerian Government Second-Level domains. The online presence of the Nigerian government in her identity is a strategy for dominance in the digital economy.”
“The use of generic domains and private emails for Government businesses and correspondences impedes the Nigerian government’s identity, security, and global recognition on the internet.
“Ninety-nine per cent of MDAs are confirmed to have made the transition to the .ng domain at the federal level, and they have maintained compliance with the Nigeria ccTLD scheme. Unfortunately, it is not the same at the state and local government levels, where 80% of administration websites and mail addresses lack the .ng validation.
“Therefore, the newly inaugurated committee has mapped out a strategy for transitioning all remaining government websites and mail addresses at all levels to .ng domains. NITDA, as a result of this, is requesting that all government websites and email addresses at all levels use the .ng domain henceforth.
“We advise that MDAs at all levels should stop using domains from the internet providers or mail providers. NITDA is working with the relevant organizations to ensure that all government institutions have access to dedicated domain names.
“We are also asking the service providers to support this initiative by ascertaining that any government domain to be registered by them conforms to this directive to ensure the general adoption of .ng,”the statement read.