NCC warns against substandard, fake devices importation

NCC Boss, Umar Garba Danbatta

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Tuesday, warned against the importation of substandard and counterfeit devices, threatening to henceforth, sanction defaulters.

Decrying the influx of sub-standard and counterfeit devices in the country, the Commission said its attendant effect is on reduced Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), threat to green environment, and risk to health.

NCC at the inaugural Type Approval meeting in Lagos, noted that sub-standard and counterfeit devices lead to increased vulnerability in online transactions, negative economic impacts on right holders, cyber threats, and privacy risks.

Type approval is an approval given to electronic devices (radio or non-radio equipment), which will be interfaced with Nigerian communications networks or used in wireless devices.

Similarly, NCC warned consumers against the use of these substandard or fake devices, alerting on the negative effects on quality of network services (QoS), and innovations.

It added that substandard devices lead to increase e-waste due to its low durability, warning of possible rise in crime rate if this trend is not checked.

The Commission said a total of 704 devices were type approved in 2017, which included 441 for mobile phone model, and 263 of other devices.

Adding that any technology device before launch to the Nigeria market must be type approved, either by the vendor, manufacturers or even individuals.

The objective of type approval is to protect public telecommunications networks, ensure safety of the public from dangerous equipment, spectrum optimisation, compatibility and interoperability of the equipment connected to the national networks and facilitate QoS.

Under the Nigerian Communications Act 2003, Section 132, individuals and organisations that do not comply with type approval are subject to arrest and on conviction, liable to a fine or imprisonment.

According to the Commission, multiple initiatives to enforce implementation of type approval on all telecommunication devices have been set up, which include sensitisation workshops, quality of service, and quality of equipment monitoring tools, inspection and deployment of device management.

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