The National Orientation Agency (NOA) says activities of cyber criminals are jeopardising the integrity of digital transactions.
Plateau State Director of the agency, Mr Bulus Dabit, said in Jos, on Thursday, that this was in spite of its numerous advantages of digital over the conventional transactions.
Dabit said that digital transactions were usually built on trust, but which was now being threatened by devious operators who used it to prey on consumers.
“Although trust is mutual in digital transactions, the consumer bears the greatest risk as he has to sometimes part with his money before accessing the goods or services.
“This trust has been challenged by cyber criminals whose activities have jeopardised the integrity of the digital process.
“Indeed many have lost their investments to such criminals occupying both sides of the divide, “ he said.
Dabit spoke against the celebration of World Consumers Rights Day with the theme `Building a Digital World Consumers Can Trust`.
He urged telecommunication content providers to engage their conscience and strengthen transparency in the industry so as to gain the confidence and increased patronage of the people.
He expressed regret that consumers in the telecom industry were being cheated by service providers through the deployment of unsolicited adverts and enlistment of consumers on certain platforms without their consent.
“As a result, monies are illegally deducted from millions of Nigerians for services not rendered.
“Although regulatory agencies like the Nigerian Communication Commission have been warning against such crimes, the Nigerian consumer has continued to be shortchanged by this industry.
“It is becoming clearer there is no longer much trust between service providers and consumers,’” he said.
He said that in spite of the activities of cyber criminals in digital transactions, some of such transactions had been going on successfully.
“The advantages are its cost effectiveness in terms of transportation and other overhead costs which were drastically reduced or eliminated in some cases”.
The NOA official called on the regulatory agencies to strictly enforce relevant laws that could protect consumers as well as restore their confidence and trust in industry.
The world consumers rights day is celebrated annually on March 16 to create a platform for consumers to express their grievances or challenges in accessing goods and services and ensure their rights were respected and protected against injustice. (NAN)