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Nigeria Central Bank Imposes Cyber Levy

IN a bid to bolster cyber-security measures and address currency weakness, Nigeria’s central bank has unveiled plans to implement a levy on domestic money transfers. The announcement, made through a circular issued late on Monday, mandates all banks and mobile money operators to levy 0.5 percent of the value of electronic transfers as a cyber-security levy, effective within two weeks.

‘The cyber-security levy is crucial to fortifying our digital infrastructure against evolving threats,’ stated a spokesperson from the central bank, emphasising the necessity of such measures in safeguarding financial systems.

The funds collected through the levy will be managed by the country’s security adviser’s office, with stringent penalties outlined for non-compliance. Institutions failing to adhere to the directive will face charges amounting to 2 percent of their annual turnover, underscoring the seriousness with which the central bank views cyber-security.


This move comes in the wake of heightened scrutiny on cryptocurrency transactions, which officials have linked to the depreciation of Nigeria’s currency, the naira. The proliferation of crypto transactions within the country has exacerbated dollar shortages, further weakening the local currency.

In March, Nigeria made headlines by charging Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, and two of its executives with tax evasion and money laundering. Binance’s head of financial crime compliance, Tigran Gambaryan, a US citizen, is currently detained in Nigeria pending trial.

Moreover, commercial banks recently introduced processing fees on cash deposits exceeding certain thresholds. Individuals depositing 500,000 naira or more are subject to a 2 percent processing fee, while corporate transactions exceeding three million naira incur a 3 percent processing fee.

These concerted efforts by Nigeria’s financial authorities reflect a multifaceted approach to addressing economic challenges, with a particular focus on enhancing cyber-security and regulating financial transactions to stabilize the currency.

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