The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has shifted the implementation of the regulatory framework for use of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) initially scheduled to start on June 1, 2018 to October 1, this year.
The apex bank gave this hint in a circular issued issued by the Director, Banking and Payment System Department, CBN, Mr. ‘Dipo Fatokun.
It stated: “In order to fully realise the objectives of the regulatory framework, the CBN has observed, considered and approved the extension of the implementation of the date of the circular to be effective from October 1, 2018.”
The CBN stated further that the regulatory framework was aimed at promoting and facilitating the development of efficient and effective system for the settlement of transactions, including the development of electronic payment systems through the USSD.
It clarified: “The vast applications of the USSD technology, in terms of available services, have raised the issue of the risks inherent in the channel. Concerns have been expressed on the likely exposure of the CBN-approved entities to the possible breaching of the USSD accessed financial services, in view of likely vulnerability in the technology and the ever-growing threats,” it said.
According to the apex banking institution, the framework aims to establish the rules and risk mitigation considerations when implementing the USSD for financial services offering in Nigeria.
It warned that any Deposit Money Bank, mobile money operator, payment solution service provider, and other financial institutions that failed to comply with the framework would be appropriately sanctioned.