These guidelines for e-banking are provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria. The Central Bank of Nigeria monitors the technological acquisitions of banks. It also ensures that all banks that operate e-banking work within the ambit of integrity and the required data confidentiality.
Internet banking operates according to the following CBN guidelines:
- Only authorized members of staff should be allowed to update or change information on the Website.
- Updates of critical information should be subject to dual verification (e.g. interest rates).
- Website information and links to other Websites should be verified for accuracy and functionality.
- Management should implement procedures to verify the accuracy and content of any financial planning software, calculators, and other interactive programs available to customers on an Internet Website or other electronic banking service.
- Links to external Websites should include a disclaimer that the customer is leaving the bank’s site and provide appropriate disclosures, such as noting the extent, if any, of the bank’s liability for transactions or information provided at other sites.
- Banks must ensure that the Internet Service Provider (ISP) has implemented a firewall to protect the bank’s Website where outsourced.
- Banks should ensure that installed firewalls are properly configured and institute procedures for continued monitoring and maintenance arrangements are in place.
- Banks should ensure that summary-level reports showing web-site usage, transaction volume, system problem logs, and transaction exception reports are made available to the bank by the Web administrator.
Penalties for Erring
Monetary penalties and/or suspension of the specific electronic banking activity (ies) or both would be imposed on erring banks and/or their officers that breach the rules set by the CBN for failure to:
- Seek CBN approval before launching, implementing or, enhancing electronic banking services/products, and/or
- Submit within the prescribed deadline the required information/documents.
Requirements to use E-Banking Services:
Customers that can use e-banking services should be:
- Residents of Nigeria with a verifiable address within the geographic boundary of Nigeria.
- Any person residing physically in Nigeria as a citizen, under a resident permit or other legal residency designation under the Nigerian Immigration Act.
- Any person known herein as a “classified person" who neither meets condition (i) nor (ii) above but is temporarily in Nigeria may utilize e-banking services limited to acceptance services such as ATMs, POS terminals or other acceptance devices deployed by a regulated institution.
How E-Banking Works
The main reasons e-banking in Nigeria are the need to reduce the number of people that enter banking premises; the need to give bank customers time-saving services.
The requirements for online banking services differ from bank to bank. However, it is important to have an internet-enabled PC which enables access to one account(s) and some bank service interfaces. Some banks require certain plug-and-play installations.
For other banks, the customer is only required to subscribe for the service they want; this subscription is usually free. After subscription, a confidential access code would be sent to the customer, after which the customer is expected to visit the bank website where the access code will be used. The customer might choose to change the password given.
Some of the services customers can have access to via internet banking include:
- Account Balance Inquiry
- Details of transactions
- Transfer of money between accounts
- Full statements of account
- Access credit facilities and profitability indices
- Payment of bills
- Make request for bank rates
It is important to note that the increase in access to online banking has also led to increase in online criminal activities.