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Useful security tips for your Whatsapp chats, data

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In a world highly driven by data, data breaches pose a serious threat to millions or possibly even billions of people globally, going by the recent alleged Whatsapp data breach controversy, which the company has denied.

According to a recent allegation from Cybernews, someone managed to hack into WhatsApp and acquired the personal information of almost 500 million users, which is now purportedly for sale.

But, later, a spokesperson for WhatsApp on Monday said there is no evidence of a ‘data leak’ from the company.

However, data breaches are nothing new because even the data from some of the biggest companies have had such incidents. So, it becomes the responsibility of the users to take the right steps to make their data safe and private.

Here are some tips that would be helpful in making WhatsApp more secure.

Check chat encryption

Although all WhatsApp chats are encrypted by default, double-checking it while sharing sensitive information is still a good idea.

To verify the encryption, tap on the contact’s name in the chat window and then tap on Encryption.

Enable two-factor authentication

Two-factor authentication provides protection by adding an extra layer of security to your account to ensure that your data isn’t accessed by someone else. So if a service supports this feature then you should be using it.

To activate two-factor authentication on Whatsapp, go to Menu – Settings – Account – Two-step verification – Enable.

Turn security notifications on

With this feature, every time a new device accesses an existing chat, a new security code is generated and a notification is sent when this security code changes.

To enable it, go to WhatsApp – Settings – Account – Security notifications and then tap on ‘Show security notification’.

Encrypt cloud backups

WhatsApp backups on Google Drive are not encrypted by default. Without this feature, a major gap will remain in your privacy protection.

Turn on end-to-end encrypted backup, go to Settings – Chats – Chat Backup – End-to-end Encrypted Backup and tap Turn On. Following this create a password and wait for your encrypted backup.

Always check unknown links

These days, it could be difficult to determine whether certain scam messages and links are malicious.

Copy the link and check it on sites like Norton Safe Web, PhishTank, and others to prevent clicking on these. By developing this habit, you will stop clicking on harmful links.

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JUST IN: CBN bows to pressure, extends deadline for old naira notes

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The Central Bank of Nigeria has finally extended the deadline for the exchange of old naira notes by 10 days.

In a press statement issued on Sunday, Godwin Emefiele, the CBN governor, said the new deadline is February 10, 2023.

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Old Naira notes deadline: CBN direct banks to work today

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In the bid to mop up all the unwanted old Naira notes still in circulation, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed all banks in the country to also work today (Sunday).

The Director of Currency Operations, Ahmed Umar disclosed this to journalists during a press conference in Katsina yesterday.

He also said that the apex bank ruled against banks issuing the new notes from across the counters but through ATM machines to avoid discriminating between big and small customers.

“We believe that using the ATM machine will give people equal opportunity to have access to the new notes.

“We are also able to track the volume of disbursement that is done through the ATM because of the log on it,” Umar said

On how they are ensuring that those in Katsina rural areas have access to the new notes, the CBN Director said:

“In Katsina there are over 750 registered agents who are tied to three banks. We disbursed N120 million to these banks to issue to these agents.

Each agents is expected to receive N500,000 per week to disburse in their communities. We have been monitoring the agents around here to ensure that they do the needful with the new notes issued to them.

“We are riding on the back of the agents to help those from far distance and communities without banks nor ATMs to receive the new notes.

“We have teams monitoring the disbursement and distribution of the new notes. The monitoring exercise covers checking ATMs machines to ensure that money is loaded on the ATM machines for people to withdraw.”

In the same vein, Umar said the apex bank is currently carrying out additional cash swap programmes to local government in the state in order to ensure that everyone particularly those people who have less than N10,000 exchange their old notes for new ones to enable them continue with their lives.

Meanwhile, on the appeal from different quarters for extension of the deadline, the CBN Director of Currency Operation said: “There is no new directives on that till this moment. The deadline still remains 31 January 2023. So, we advise people to adhere to the deadline and deposit their money.”

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Delta State House of Assembly approves Governor Okowa’s N100 billion loan request 4 months to end of tenure

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The Delta State House of Assembly has approved Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s request for an N100 billion credit facility.

The N100 billion loan approval which is coming barely 4 months to the tenure of the current administration, is part of the N150 billion earlier approved Consolidated Syndicated Loan.

The loan approval followed the adoption of a motion moved by the Majority Leader of the Assembly, Hon. Ferguson Onwo, and seconded by the member representing Ughelli North I constituency, Mr. Charles Oniyere at the Assembly’s plenary in Asaba on Thursday.

The Governor had transmitted a letter for the N100 billion loan request to the lawmakers through the Speaker, Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori duly presented the same to the House.

Oborevwori, who is the state’s 2023 Governorship Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), noted that the assembly had on April 26, 2022, received and had subsequently approved the governor’s request of N150 billion consolidated syndicated loan from Zenith Bank.

Okowa said in the letter, “With the change of Lead Arranger from Zenith Bank to Premium Trust Bank Limited, alongside other participating banks willing to accede to the pricing terms and further documentations, Premium Trust Bank Limited has insisted that in line with the prudential guidelines and extant regulations, a House of Assembly’s resolution was required to enable the bank to consummate the transaction.


”Consequent on this, the State Executive Council at its first meeting held on Monday, January 16, 2023, considered and approved for the state government to obtain N100 billion out of the earlier approved N150 billion consolidated syndicated loan led by Premium Trust Bank Limited in line with the reverse terms and conditions.”


The governor explained that the loan will be used for the payment of contractors and funding of various crucial ongoing projects across the state.

In a related development, the House of Assembly also approved another request by the governor for an N2 billion bank facility to fund an additional investment of 3% equity in the UTM Offshore Limited Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) Project.

This similarly followed the adoption of a motion moved by the Majority Leader of the Assembly, Hon Onwo and seconded by the Minority Leader, Hon Innocent Anidi.

Okowa in the letter written to the House said, “I wish to state that in order to further diversify the economic base of the state and take advantage of the increased demand for natural gas in Europe and other parts of the world due to the shortfall in the supply as a result of the Russian-Ukrainian war.


”UTM Offshore Limited, which in the first instance offered 5 (five) percent equity shares to Delta State under a term loan facility from Fidelity Bank, has offered additional 5 (five) percent equity to the state.


”In view of the bank’s commitment to partner with the state government on this investment with an offer of N20 billion loan facility.

The State Executive Council at its first meeting held on Monday, Jan. 16 considered and approved for the state government to accept the offer by Fidelity Bank Plc.


“The terms and conditions for the loan include; an interest rate of 21 percent per annum, management fees of one percent flat, three years tenure of payment, and facility amount of N20 billion.


”Also, the facility is to be secured by the issuance of an Irrevocable Standing Payment Order (ISPO) authorizing the Accountant General of the Federation to deduct from the State FAAC allocation monthly.”

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