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Phone hacks by jealous lovers on the increase



Technology has advanced and while hackers continue to infiltrate systems across the world for money, information and vital trade secrets, lovers, husbands and wives on the other hand, are resorting to tapping and hacking mobile devices to keep a tab on a partner they suspect may be unfaithful.

Kaspersky Lab, a Russian IT security firm recently said that in 2014 alone, 295,000 new mobile malicious programmes were discovered, adding that its security software had fended off about 1.4 million attacks on smartphones.

The spokesperson for the Nigerian Communications Commission, Mr. Tony Ojobo, explained that there is need for anyone who is engaged in hacking, or who intends to hack a spouse’s phone to understand that it is now a criminal offence in Nigeria due to the country’s cybercrime law.
“As you know, hacking is a global phenomenon, so, it is not just about Nigeria. But it is something a regulator like the NCC is really concerned about. But we are happy there is a basis for the prosecution of anyone caught doing such a thing now,” he said.

A consultant psychologist, Prof. Ayobami Makanju, explained that when couples resort to hacking into their partner’s phones to monitor their calls, there is no longer a basis for being together.

“I think it is madness. If it is as bad as that, then each person should go his or her own way. It is a sign that trust between such people has broken down irretrievably. So, what happens when you get the evidence you are looking for? Now, you have caught him, what next? It is never a solution.”

President of the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria, Mr. Lanre Ajayi, said, “Phone hacking was not a crime in Nigeria until recently when the Cyber Security Bill was enacted by former President Goodluck Jonathan”.

In 2014, the Senate passed the Nigerian Cyber Crime Bill into law, making it a criminal offence for anybody to gain an unauthorised access to someone’s device for whatever reason.

Section 7 of the Cyber Crime Law 2013, states, “Any person, who intentionally and without authorisation or in excess of authority, intercepts by technical means, transmissions of non-public computer data, content data or traffic data, including electromagnetic emissions or signals from a computer, computer system or network carrying or emitting signals, to or from a computer, computer system or connected system or network; commits an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than two years or to a fine of not less than N5,000,000.00 or to both fine and imprisonment.”

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