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False claim circulates online that NIMC is giving out 5GB free data

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A post circulating on the social media claims that the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC)  is giving out free internet data.

The NIMC is an agency that operates and regulates matters of national identity in Nigeria.

The post retrieved from a WhatsApp group on January 27, 2021, directed people to claim the data via a link.

The post read:

NIN VERIFICATION Check: If Your Number have (sic) been chosen by NIN to receive 5GB As Part of Verification REWARD Program For Who have (sic) been using the SIM for more than three months FOR ALL NETWORK USERS  Deadline: 30-01-2021  Click:

THE CLAIM

The NIMC is giving  out 5GB of data to those who have verified their National Identification Number (NIN).

THE FINDINGS

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Checks by the FactCheckHub show that the claim is FALSE.

The FactCheckHub observed that the website attached to the claim was different from the official website of the NIMC.

The official website of the NIMC is https://nimc.gov.ng.

The website in the claim sought to gain traffic by prompting people to share.

For instance, the first page of the website asked people to click a link to check if they had been selected for the 5GB NIN data.

The following page asked for mobile numbers, after which it directed people to another page, asking them to share the post in 12 WhatsApp groups before having access to the data.

The page directing people to share the post multiple times.
The page directing people to share the post multiple times.

The FactCheckHub also reached out to Kayode Adegoke, head of corporate communications, NIMC, who confirmed that the claim was false.

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“This is fake,” he replied to The FactCheckHub’s enquiry via a telephone conversation.

In addition, the FactCheckHub had earlier fact-checked and debunked a similar claim asking people to visit a phishing website.

Such claims usually target topics and areas that a lot of people are interested in, such as relief fund, recruitment, free data, among others.

The objective is often to drive traffic to a website – as it often asks for a link to be shared multiple times.

It could also be a survey website getting people to fill out questionnaires under false pretense.

Sometimes such websites are set up to obtain people’s information for nefarious purposes.

In order to avoid falling victims to such false claim, it is important to verify the information by going to the government, institution, agency or company’s social media handles.

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A number of such institutions that attract public interest are verified on the social media. Such social media handles usually have accompanying websites included in the bio.

Google searching information using keywords is another way of verifying claims like this.

THE VERDICT

The claim that the NIMC is giving out 5GB of data to those who have verified their NIN is FALSE.

This report was originally published by Factcheckhub.

'Niyi works with The ICIR as an investigative reporter and fact-checker. You can shoot him an email via [email protected] You can as well follow him on Twitter via @niyi_oyedeji.

If you or someone you know has a lead, tip or personal experience about this report, our WhatsApp line is open and confidential for a conversation

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