In 2018, research showed that over 350 million fake products were sold in Nigeria, and more than half of those were mobile phones.
In its report “Combating Counterfeit and Substandard ICT Devices”, the Nigerian Communications Commission’s claimed:
The number of sub-standard devices increased from 140 million as at the end of 2014, to over 350 million by the end of June, 2017.
In response to the booming counterfeit smartphone industry in Nigeria, the government – via the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) – have been tasked with countering the trend.
The official NCC website confirms that increasing cybercrime, evasion of taxes, terrorism and health and safety concerns raised by use of stolen, counterfeit and substandard devices in Nigeria is a responsibility which the NCC takes seriously.
In a nod to the effects of counterfeit smartphones on the wider economy, Samsung’s Africa President, Mr. Sung Yoon, admitted:
We are joining forces with relevant authorities to address the issue. At this point, we have no plans of bringing a manufacturing plant to Nigeria because of the grey market cited, which would affect our returns on investment.
For the end-users, poor network performance can also be blamed on the devices themselves being counterfeits. It’s been claimed that around 60% of phone brands in the country are not NCC type-approved, and that this fact is the cause of persistent poor quality of service from network operators.
These facts highlight the growing concern of the risks and dangers of counterfeit devices for enterprises, governments and consumers alike. Learn how DeviceAssure manages these risks for telecoms, B2C brands, government regulatory bodies and device resellers, ensuring device authenticity prevents