NCC mulls new guidelines for SIM swap, enforcement regulations

Eugene-Juwah• Raises fine from N5 million to N10 million 

THE Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) is to come up with new guidelines on Subscribers Identification Module (SIM) replacement and enforcement processes regulations.

To this end, the commission has developed a draft enforcement processes regulations, which is an amendment of the previous regulations issued to the telecommunications industry in 2005.

When finalized, the regulation is expected to provide a more robust framework for effective and efficient processes and procedures for carrying out enforcement in the industry.

Speaking at the public inquiries on the regulations in Abuja, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Dr. Eugene Juwah, said that the fines for flouting the regulations set out by the commission are being increased from N5 million to N10 million.

Juwah noted that there has been a rapid growth in the industry adding that the commission had noticed that the incidence of noncompliance to its regulations is on the increase.

He said: “Because of the progress and success of the industry, we feel that the fines of 10 years ago are small and they can afford to disobey the regulations and pay the fines. What we have done is to increase the fine and make it more painful for them. If you continue to flout our regulations, we can withhold regulatory assistance, for instance, if you apply to get numbers for your network, we won’t respond.”

Juwah explained that the commission has developed a draft SIM replacement guidelines aimed at creating and providing a seamless, effective and efficient procedure for SIM replacement in the country, stressing that the measure would also help curtail the incidents of fraudulent replacements which have now become rampant in the industry.

According to him, the regulations and guidelines would complement the Act and the respective licenses issued by the commission in addition to providing standards and principles for enforcement processes and SIM replacements in

Also speaking, the Head Legal Services, in the commission, Mrs. Yetunde Akinloye, said that NCC has received several complaints from subscribers that their SIMs have been swapped without their consent, adding that the guidelines specifics criteria for getting a new SIM if a subscribers own is stolen or damaged.

“The regulations have been standardized across board, we want to ensure that it is only the person who own the SIM that can walk into an operators office and swap the SIM. We have window of 45 days within which to finalize the report and send it for gazzetting”, she added.

 

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