Statistics indicate that Internet eXchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN), has recorded huge results in localizing internet traffic, TechEconomy.ng can report.
Interestingly, emerging facts also show that IXPN has grown the local traffic by over 40,000% (average of annual increase of 5,000%) while the cost saving increased 40 times within the span of 8 years to Forty Million USD ($40,000,000) annually.
The Chief Executive Officer of the IXPN, Mr. Muhammed Rudman, expatiated on this while Chairing a Technology Forum organized by the Nigerian Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA) in Lagos on Thursday, May 28, 2021.
The NITRA Technology Forum 2021 was a one-day event aimed at bringing together Web hosting companies, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), Data Centres, Web developers, IT Entrepreneurs and academics from the ICT community in Nigeria to discuss, educate and promote the adoption of local hosting in Nigeria.
Over the years Internet exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN) has played a crucial role in the localization of data hosting within the shores of Nigeria.
Rudman who was speaking on the Forum’s theme “Achieving 30% Growth In Local Cloud Hosting By 2024”, the growth of local traffic at IXPN has been significant, from less than 1% traffic in 2006 to about 60% in 2020.
“I have been an advocate for Internet domestication since 2006, highlighting the importance of local hosting with every opportunity, especially at the various conferences and events.
“A report by Internet Society released in June 2020 with the title “Anchoring the African Internet Ecosystem: Lessons from Kenya and Nigeria’s Internet Exchange Point Growth” clearly demonstrated remarkable growth of local traffic by IXPN from 2012 when the initial study took place to the year 2020 when the report was updated.
“IXPN has grown the local traffic by over 40,000% (average of annual increase of 5,000%) while the cost saving increased 40 times within the span of 8 years to Forty Million USD ($40,000,000) annually.
“Today, IXPN has over eighty (80) interconnected networks, which comprises of large content providers, International Carriers, Mobile Network Operators, Internet Service Providers and Educational Networks.
“We are not there yet, hence the need to sustain the sensitization! With NITRA now raising the flag higher and directed at achieving 30% growth from the existing 60%, over 80% of Nigeria’s Internet traffic should be locally be accessible by 2024.
He commended NITRA for hosting the forum which provided the opportunity for all to learn from industry experts, engage with sponsors and professionals as well as gain business opportunities in the hosting business.
Importance of Local Hosting:
“We need to always remember that Nigeria has the population to grow any business of its choice. We need to focus and plan on how to develop our ICT infrastructure and harness the assets in order to unlock the potential of our huge population. As you are aware, data is the new oil, usually coined as “Data is the King”.
“The reality is that data is the economic engine of the Internet. With billions of US dollars invested annually across the globe towards cloud infrastructure by private and public entities, Nigeria must strive to become the hub for Internet content in Africa not just content consumers.
He said that local hosting is critical for any country that wishes to develop its internet infrastructure and empower its citizens as well as ensure national data sovereignty.
“Nigerian government realization of the cloud localization brought about the National Cloud Computing Policy by NITDA in 2019, which is aimed at promoting the migration of National Data to local cloud with a goal of achieving 30% by the end of 2024. Some years back the Federal Government of Nigeria also setup Galaxy Backbone PLC, a company empowered to provide Internet and hosting services for government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
“Local hosting in Nigeria will reduce the huge capital flight. This reduction in capital flight will also lead to higher quality of service as local hosting enables websites run about three (3) times faster than those hosting overseas because of ultralow latency.
“Hosting of content locally will further strengthen the cyber security of the country, as the passing of data between local networks would be within our national borders. It will also ensure business continuity as Nigeria is dependent on submarine cables when hosting internationally.
“These submarine cables are prone to damages by passing ships or due to natural disasters such as a Tsunamis which will definitely mean a disruption to information flow.
“Furthermore, hosting of content locally will help build and develop technical skills to manage data centres in the country. This, also, inadvertently, means the creation of more jobs for Nigerians and the growth of the technology and hosting industry in the nation.
“It is imperative to host data locally to avoid the complexity of international laws. Once important information is being hosted outside the country, the laws of the land no longer apply. Rather, the information and client data hosted abroad are now under the data privacy laws of the country where the data is being hosted. With local hosting, organisations and individuals are guaranteed of needed support at the right time, as barriers like time difference and language are no longer an issue.
“I would encourage local hosting for Nigerian businesses as it is a step in the right direction to improve Nigeria’s economy. We need to invest locally. Our business plans should be strategically focused and geared towards developing our country, Nigeria.
“To avoid exporting and re-importing our data, we need to host our data locally. Let us all rise up, embrace the challenge and help develop Nigeria’s ICT ecosystem”, Rudman said.
Earlier in his welcome speech, the Chairman of Nigeria Information Technology Reporters’ Association (NITRA), Chike Onwuegbuchi, said that the theme: “Achieving 30% Growth In Local Cloud Hosting By 2024”, was carefully selected to enable stakeholders in the information and Communications Technology to discuss issues that will bring growth and development to the sector.
“This edition”, he said, “we are looking at local cloud hosting a very important aspect of technological development.
“Cloud computing has been described as the greatest game changer since the creation of the internet and is one of the fastest growing areas of technology today. It can be simply defined as renting time on a computing infrastructure over the internet, rather than building your own from the ground up. In a way, it could be described as outsourcing your computer infrastructure.
“Cloud computing offers scalability and reliability that cannot be matched by a single enterprise.
“Today, we are talking of data protection. How can you protect data that is warehoused outside of our shores?
“Local cloud hosting also helps to keep our local internet traffic local as local content providers host their content in-country.
He also recalled that NITDA in 2019 launched Nigeria’s Cloud computing policy and one of the goals of this Policy is to ensure a 30% increase in adoption of cloud computing by 2024 among Federal Public Institutions (FPIs) and SMEs that provide digital-enabled services to the government.
“The policy also targets 35% growth in cloud computing investments by 2024. It is on this that we selected the theme of today’s event.
“When we are talking about local cloud hosting we can’t achieve it if we don’t patronize local datacenters; this informed the presences of datacentre operators in this discourse.
The Forum attracted industry stakeholders including corporate organisations; Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA); Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN); Cloudflex; Layer3; Vintage Confluence LLC and industry associations – ALTON, ATCON, NCS, amongst others.