• Sat. Jul 13th, 2024

NCC Issues Stern Warning Against Purchase of Pre-Registered SIM Cards

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has once again cautioned mobile phone subscribers against purchasing pre-registered SIM cards, citing significant risks to individuals, national security, and compliance with telecommunications regulations.

In a recent advisory posted on its website, the NCC emphasized that pre-registered SIM cards are often fraudulently activated using stolen or fake identity information, bypassing the mandatory registration process. This illegal practice allows criminals to operate anonymously and leads to numerous problems including regulatory non-compliance, lack of accountability, reputational damage, service disruptions, increased operational costs, trust issues, and unwanted surveillance.

“Imagine walking into a store to buy a new phone number, only to find out it’s already been activated under someone else’s name, and they have no idea! That’s exactly what a pre-registered SIM card is. These cards have been fraudulently activated by someone else, often with stolen or fake identity information. This bypasses the entire registration process, creating a whole host of problems,” the NCC stated.

The regulatory body urged subscribers to ensure they register their SIM cards personally, remain cautious of dubious offers, and report any suspicious activity. “The NCC is committed to creating a reliable and secure telecommunication network for all Nigerians. However, this goal can’t be achieved without your participation. By rejecting pre-registered SIM cards and registering your SIM cards properly, you become an active player in safeguarding yourself, your loved ones, and the nation as a whole. Remember, responsible registration practices pave the way for a secure and thriving digital future for everyone,” the statement added.

The commission reiterated that strict regulations require SIM cards to be registered to the actual user for security and accountability purposes. Using a pre-registered SIM card can lead to fines or penalties for non-compliance with telecommunications regulations.

The NCC also highlighted the potential impact on business operations. Organizations that use pre-registered SIM cards for official purposes face operational risks when these SIM cards are deactivated or flagged due to non-compliance, which can disrupt business communications and operations. “Stakeholders’ discovery of organizations using pre-registered SIM cards can harm the organization’s reputation. Stakeholders will regard the business as untrustworthy or unethical, leading to a loss of confidence and potential business opportunities,” the advisory concluded.

The NCC’s advisory underscores its ongoing efforts to maintain a secure and compliant telecommunications environment, urging all subscribers to follow proper registration practices to protect both personal and national interests.

Hyacinth Beluchukwu Nwafor

Hyacinth Beluchukwu Nwafor is a seasoned journalist and the CEO/Founder Belch Digital Communications, publishers of Hybrid News Nigeria.

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