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Happy Friday ☀️

Remember Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the now-defunct crypto exchange—FTX Trading Ltd—who was convicted in November 2023, of orchestrating a massive fraud that led to the collapse of his FTX exchange, and the loss of about $10 million in customer money?

Well, a Manhattan federal court has sentenced Bankman-Fried to 25 years in prison, and he has been ordered to give up $11 billion in assets as part of his punishment.


NDPC investigates over 400 data breach cases involving loan apps

Nigeria’s Data Protection Commission (NDPC) had a busy 2023. Asides earning over ₦400 million ($287,044) in revenue for the year, it also investigated three big companies—Opay, Meta and DHL—amongst others, for data infractions.

Now, the Nigerian digital lending sector is under the NDPC’s scrutiny. The watchdog is investigating 400+ cases where lenders accessed borrowers’ private information without consent—a violation of the Nigeria Data Protection Act (NDPA) of 2023.

What has the NDPC found? Its investigation reveals that loan apps are “overly intrusive,” collecting unnecessary data despite Google’s policy changes which restricted loan apps on its Play Store from accessing users’ photos and contacts in April 2023. The NDPC now seeks to restrict or ban phone numbers used by lenders for such breaches.

To address this issue, the NDPC has adopted a multi-faceted strategy: teaming up with regulators and platforms to deny access to lenders misusing data. The NDPC is also drafting the Nigeria Data Protection Act-General Application and Implementation Directive (NDPA-GAID) to address data ethics and hold third-party platforms accountable for breaches.

Additionally, the NDPC will work with the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) to ensure lenders obtain data protection clearance before operating.

Zoom out: The Nigeria data protection framework empowers NDPC and the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) to fine entities violating the Act, with penalties directly linked to the severity of data protection breaches. Fines range from ₦2million ($1,435) to ₦10 million ($7,176), or 2% of the company’s annual gross revenue of the preceding year. In August 2021, NITDA fined Soko Loan ₦10 million ($7,176) for illegal data tampering with users’ private data.

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Detained Binance executive sues NSA, EFCC

After Nigeria restricted users’ access to the website of Binance, the global crypto exchange, two of its top executives—Tigran Gambaryan and Nadeem Anjawarlla, regional manager for Binance in Africa—flew into the country to resolve the dispute. On arrival into the country, the office of Nigeria’s National Security Adviser (NSA) seized the travel documents of both officials, detaining both executives without any criminal charge.

Both executives remained in detention for more than two weeks before Anjarwalla, fled the country using a smuggled passport. Gambaryan, the remaining Binance employee left in detention is now looking for respite.

Tigran Gambaryan has filed a lawsuit against the NSA and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for violating his fundamental human right to liberty by detaining him and seizing his travel documents.

Per Gambaryan’s lawsuit, the seizure of his travel documents and detention violated Section 35 (1) and (4) of Nigeria’s Constitution, which safeguards the freedom of movement for all persons. The suit aims to halt the detention of Gambaryan for investigations related to Binance. The former crypto-focused US Federal Agent is seeking release from detention and return of his travel documents. Gambaryan also wants a public apology from the NSA.Gambaryan’s case has been adjourned to April 8, 2024.

In other news, Nadeem Anjawarlla also filed similar charges against the NSA and the EFCC. However, lawyers representing Anjawarlla have bailed out of the case, leaving him without legal representation. Anjawarlla’s case has been adjourned till he gets legal backing. 

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Meta caught spying on Snapchat, YouTube and Amazon

Curiosity isn’t just for cats anymore. 

In a bid to outlive its competitors, Meta has discovered a newfound interest in what other social media platforms are up to. 

The news: New court documents show that Meta, owners of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, has been spying on Snapchat’s web traffic.

How? The court document revealed that in 2016, Meta—then Facebook—launched a secret project, stylised “Ghostbusters”, to acquire, decrypt, transfer, and use private, encrypted in-app analytics from Snapchat, YouTube, and Amazon.

Mark Zuckerberg was at the helm of the plan. Court documents show that Zuckerberg, Meta’s leader, via an email correspondence with three other top executives, launched a query into Snapchat’s numbers and users’ activities due to how fast the company was growing and the difficulty in getting its metrics. At the time, Snapchat had grown from 100,000 daily active users about a year after its launch in 2011 to 158 million by 2016, with Facebook at 1.86 billion users. 

Javier Olivan, now Facebook’s COO, was sold on the plan as well. Together with Guy Rosen, CEO of Onavo, a web analytics company owned by Meta, they cracked the code and figured out a way to extract users’ data from Snapchat. Meta intercepted users’ data from their phones before it reached Snapchat’s servers, a technique known as SSL bumping

Meta continued spying on Snapchat users’ data from June 2016 until early 2019. Spying on Snapchat wasn’t enough. Meta also engaged the tech in spying on competitors, YouTube and Amazon between 2017 and 2018, extracting useful decision-making information in the process. 

Meta now faces a lawsuit for “anti-competitive conduct and exploiting user data through deceptive practices.”

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TC Insights

Funding tracker

Dodai, an Ethiopian electric vehicle manufacturing company, secured $4 million in Series A funding from Nissay Capital, Musashi Seimitsu, and Inclusion Japan. (Mar 24)

Here are other deals for the week:

  • Egyptian AI-focused edtech startup closed a $3 million bridge fundraising round led by Disruptech Ventures, with EdVentures, CFYE, and others joining the investment. (Mar 26)
  • Right Now Response (RNR), a South African breakdown management platform for truck fleet managers and OEMs, raised $634k from HAVAIC. (Mar 26)

Before you go, our State Of Tech In Africa Report for Q4 2023 is out. Click thislink to download it.

Follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn for more funding announcements. You can also visit DealFlow, our real-time funding tracker.

Crypto Tracker

The World Wide Web3


OneLiquidity  logo

Coin Name

Current Value



Bitcoin $71,006

+ 2.57%

+ 13.90%

Ether $3,575

+ 2.02%

+ 6.19%

Tether USDt


+ 0.03%

– 0.06%

BNB $584.99

+ 1.81%

+ 41.02%

* Data as of 12:26 AM WAT, March 29, 2024.


  • The second edition of TechCabal’sMoonshot Conference is set for October 9–11, 2024, at the Eko Convention Centre, Lagos, Nigeria. Moonshot will assemble Africa’s biggest thinkers, players and problem solvers on a global launchpad for change. If you want to join the stakeholders in Africa’s tech ecosystem for three days of insightful getting an early-bird ticket at 20% off
  • Nigeria’s biggest women-only festival, Hertitude, is back for a third time. For those new to the scene, Zikoko brings all the girls to the yard every year to let their hair down, form bonds and celebrate what it means to be a hot babe. It’s happening on April 20, 2024 in Lagos and will feature everything from talent shows and karaoke sessions to spa services, live music performances and an afterparty. Click here to get tickets.
  • Attention all music lovers! On Saturday, May 11, 2024, Zikoko wants you outside for a day of link-ups, games, drinks and live performances at Muri Okunola Park, Lagos. Strings Attached is an opportunity for friends to reconnect, lovers to bond and individuals to make friends and build community. To get a free ticket, download the Onebank by Sterling App and sign up using ZIKOKO as the referral code. You’ll get your ticket in your email once tickets are available. Click here to get the app.

Written by: Mariam Muhammad & Faith Omoniyi

Edited by: Timi Odueso

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