THE country’s mobile network operators announced on Monday that they are now preparing to roll out their registration processes for subscriber identity modules (SIMs).
Smart Communications, Inc., Globe Telecom, Inc., and DITO Telecommunity Corp. issued statements after the National Telecommunications Commission released the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the SIM Card Registration Act or Republic Act No. 11934.
The law, which took effect on Oct. 28, intends to regulate the registration and use of SIMs by requiring registration with mobile service providers as a prerequisite to activation.
Under the IRR, users should undertake registration of their own SIMs within 180 days (which can also be extended up to 120 days) from the effectivity of the law.
Anyone who provides false information or who uses fraudulent identification documents to register a SIM may face up to two years of imprisonment or a fine of not more than P300,000, according to the rules.
Mobile service companies that fail or refuse to register SIMs may also face fines of up to P1 million.
“We are ready to roll out our SIM Registration processes after months of preparations, which have included, among others, studying best global practices and technology solutions from other countries that have already implemented SIM registration,” Francis E. Flores, senior vice-president and head of consumer business group-individual at Smart, said in an e-mailed statement.
“We will release more information about the SIM registration portal via our official channels in the next few weeks,” he added.
For its part, Globe said it will launch its online SIM registration platform and start selling new SIMs in deactivated mode on Dec. 27.
“Our goal is to have a SIM registration process that is seamless, secure, inclusive and convenient for our customers,” Globe Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ernest L. Cu said.
DITO Chief Administrative Officer Adel A. Tamano said separately: “We support this important initiative of the government to protect the public from phishing and similar types of fraudulent activities.”
“We will do our level best to make the registration process as simple and painless as possible for new DITO subscribers and our 14 million existing customers,” he added. — Arjay L. Balinbin