CBN imposes 0.5% Cybersecurity Levy on electronic transfers – Businessday

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In two weeks time, banks in the country will start charging a 0.5 percent cybersecurity levy on electronic transfers, on the Central Bank of Nigeria’s direction.

The CBN made the announcement in a circular signed by Chibuzor Efobi, the director of payments system management, and Haruna Mustafa,
the director of financial policy and regulation.

The circular was directed to all commercial, merchant, non-interest and payment service banks, among others.

According to the apex bank, the directive is a follow-up on an earlier letter dated June 25, 2018 (Ref: BPS/DIR/GEN/CIR/05/008) and October 5, 2018 (Ref: BSD/DIR/GEN/LAB/11/023), respectively, on compliance with the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc.) Act 2015.

The deduction and collection of the cybersecurity levy is a sequel to the enactment of the 2024 Cybercrime (prohibition, prevention etc) Amendment Act of 2024, the CBN revealed.

“Following the enactment of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) (amendment) Act 2024 and under the provision of Section 44 (2)(a) of the Act, “a levy of 0.5% (0.005) equivalent to a half percent of all electronic transactions value by the business specified in the second schedule of the Act, is to be remitted to the National Cybersecurity Fund (NCF), which shall be administered by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA).”

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“Deductions shall commence within two (2) weeks from the date of this circular for all financial institutions and the monthly remittance of the levies collected in bulk to the NCF account domiciled at the CBN by the 5th business day of every subsequent month.

“Finally, all institutions under the regulatory purview of the CBN are hereby directed to note and comply with the provisions of the Act and this circular.”

However, loan disbursements and repayments, salary payments, intra-account transfers within the same bank or between different banks for the same customer, intra-bank transfers between customers of the same bank will remain unaffected by the new charge.

Inter-branch transfers within a bank, cheque clearing and settlements, ⁠Letters of Credits, ⁠Banks’ recapitalisation-related funding only bulk funds movement from collection accounts, savings and deposits including transactions involving long-term investments, among others are also in affected by the Cyber security levy.

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