CBN Withdraws Cybersecurity Levy Directive

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has withdrawn the directive to banks and other financial institutions to charge cybersecurity levy on electronic transfers.

On May 6, the central bank instructed all commercial, merchant, non-interest, and payment service banks, as well as mobile money operators and payment service providers, to implement a 0.5 percent cybersecurity levy on electronic transactions.

This directive from the central bank follows the enactment of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) Amendment Act of 2024.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) announced that the collected charges would be transferred to the national cybersecurity fund and managed by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA). However, the CBN paused the implementation of this cybersecurity levy in a circular titled ‘Re: Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, ETC) (Amendment) Act 2024 — Implementation Guidance on the Collection and Remittance of the National Cybersecurity Levy,’ dated May 17.

This circular, released to the public on May 19, was signed by Chibuzo Efobi, Director of the Payments System Management Department, and Haruna Mustafa, Director of the Financial Policy and Regulation Department.

“The Central Bank of Nigeria circular dated May 6, 2024 (Ref: PSMD/DIR/PUB/LAB/017/004) on the above subject refers,” stated the CBN.

“Further to this, please be advised that the above referenced circular is hereby withdrawn.

“Please be guided accordingly.”

CBN withdrew the directive after President Bola Tinubu suspended the cybersecurity levy on May 14.

Tinubu directed the apex bank to suspend the implementation and review the modalities for its implementation.

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