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Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities

by Abbey Lily
Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities
Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities

Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities

Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities
AT a time when security challenge is threatening the stability of the country, a group, National Fire Prevention Awareness and Advocacy (NFPWA), has advised government to tighten the noose around telecommunications facilities by way of standard and regulations.
  The body wants the regulatory organs to task themselves with periodic audit assessment of communication facilities and environment to ensure that service providers exercise nothing below established standards and benchmark in the protection of mission critical facilities such as data and communications centers.
  Protecting Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and telecoms infrastructure guarantees efficient and reliable services to the end users. The sector has been awashed with increase in vandalism and theft, with operators loosing about 10, 000 generating sets to vandals in 2016.
   The Group’s Head of Corporate Service, Mrs. Uche Dike, in an interview, said it recognised that it was imperative to be extra cautious with network facilities this period to avoid attack whether internal or external that is capable of subjecting the national security to danger.
   She conceded that as much as the emergence and growing trends in Information Communication Technology (ICT), has boosted Nigeria’s awareness level, safety in the sector was keen to avert disruption that could jeopardise individual lives and the sovereignty of a nation.
    Already, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has called on Nigerians to protect telecoms infrastructure, stressing that “we need to be more vigilant. We need to report any form of vandalisation to security agencies. In the existing laws of this country, vandalisation of telecommunications infrastructure carries heavy penalties including a jail term if found culpable. In addition, the Commission is currently consulting with our law makers to finalize on a Bill called Critical Infrastructure Protection Bill which seeks to treat all telecom infrastructure as public property, to be protected as such.”
    Besides vandalism slowing down the pace of growth and contributing to poor Quality of Service (QoS), Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, said there are vices arising from this including cutting of cables, destruction of base stations, stealing of generators and general pilfering of telecommunications equipment in some host communities.
    According to Dike, “The Internet has grown to become increasingly relevant to our daily lives, and this extrapolates to all sectors of the nation’s economy. This network system has not only revolutionised modern approach to governance but also transformed the way essential services are provided. As private and public organisations continuously migrate their operations and services online, modern industrial facilities and production systems are becoming increasingly connected to computer networks for their control and security.
  “It is therefore non negotiable that mission critical facilities which provide IT, data and telecommunication service must be protected as they must maintain operations without interruption. For instance, if there is a fire outbreak around or within these facilities, it’s effect may take years to normalise.”
  In view of this, Dike said the group had concluded arrangements to deal extensively with safety and caution within and around telecommunications facilities in its forthcoming conference billed to hold May 5 in Lagos.
  “The programme will look at benchmarking and standards for protection against life, fire safety and security that will ensure business continuity and integrity of private and national data”.
  She noted that telecommunications operators must keep themselves abreast of updates in safety demands and standards through continuous education achievable in training and retraining of field workers.
Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities
Group seeks standard regulations around telecoms facilities

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