ZICTA starts SIM registration
ZAMBIABy BiztechAfrica - Aug. 17, 2012, 9:11 a.m.
By Edith Mwale, Lusaka, Zambia
The Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA) has embarked on a SIM card registration exercise aimed at enhancing security in the telecommunication sector.
ZICTA Public Relations officer Chisha Malunda said the exercise protect SIM card users from hackers and will make it easy for mobile service providers to easily track the SIM card if stolen or lost.
“Apart from providing security, ZICTA said the exercise will help improve the information communication technology (ICT) sector in the country,” Malunda said.
ZICTA, the country’s telecom sector regulator Malunda said is currently working with all the three mobile service providers-MTN Zambia, Airtel Zambia and Zamtel in implementing the exercise.
ZICTA announced in October last year that it will start SIM card and mobile phone registration within the next 12 months.
ZICTA wants the phone serial numbers and the SIM card registered in a bid to curb crime and phone theft. SIM card registration requires customers to produce identification documents and personal details before joining the network.
The phones that will not be registered will have to be blocked said ZICTA consumer affairs manager Katwamba Mwansa last year.
Zambia, like many other countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is experiencing phenomenal growth in the use of mobile phones but many phones are being stolen everyday and criminals are using the phones to commit crimes while other phones are sold to Zambia's neighbouring countries.
In addition to blocking SIM cards and phones for those who fail to register, the authority said the new Electronic Communications and Transactions gives powers to ZICTA to curb cyber crime such as Internet pornography, which carries a penalty of 10 years in prison.
However, SIM card registration is not without controversy. Subscribers claim registration will work against the principle of universal access and adds to the cost of SIM cards as vendors will have to invest more in data-capturing technology.
Other customers argue SIM card registration will give the authorities the ability to monitor their citizenry where ever they may be, examining conversations, text messages and Internet activities.
MORE ZAMBIA NEWS
ICANN DNSSEC roadshow in ZambiaZICTA, in conjunction with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), will host the ICANN African DNSSEC Roadshow which will run from 28th to 30th April. Read More
Huawei rolls out new base stations in ZambiaChinese communications equipment giant Huawei Technologies has launched the first of a series of 169 base stations that will connect rural communities in Zambia to the mobile phone network. Read More
Zambian consumers warned over unlicensed smartphone importersSamsung Electronics Zambia has warned against buying handsets from unlicensed distributors. Read More
Mustek, Huawei International Pte. Ltd. in $51 million project for Zambia Railway LimitedMustek Limited has announced its contract to supply and deliver over $12 million worth of Huawei’s ‘Signalling and Telecommunications’ equipment to a consortium upgrading Zambia Railway Limited. Read More
Huawei Technologies Zambia gives K263, 000 to charitable organisationsMore effective corporate social responsibility programmes are needed to help struggling communities in Zambia, according to Huawei Technology Zambia. Read More
Zambia complaints lines launched for SIM reg issuesZambia’s regulator has highlighted the launch of dedicated lines for complaints by mobile users who have been cut off from the networks despite having registered their SIM cards. Read More
Zambia to boost ICT access with own PC assembly plantZambian President Michael Sata says the government plans to push ahead with a computer assembly plant in Lusaka, as part of its ICT access initiatives. Read More
ZICTA directs operators to open toll free linesZICTA has directed Zambia’s mobile service providers to open toll-free lines to attend to queries arising from SIM card registration exercise. Read More
ZICTA implements SIM switch offZICTA has implemented a SIM card switch off after the expiry on the January 31 deadline for registration. Read More
FEATURED STORYKenyan shift to Green Economy would generate USD 45bn by 2030
Kenya’s transition to a green economy could produce major economic benefits equivalent to an estimated USD 45 billion by 2030, a new study shows.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHE-waste threatens Ghana’s beaches
Many beaches in Ghana, already stressed by pollution and poor maintenance, are now facing a new threat: e-waste.
COMPANY NEWSMTN makes it onto World Champions list
MTN Group has been named as the only South African company on the World Champions list.VMware Reports First Quarter 2014 Results
VMWare has announced Year-over-Year revenue growth of 14% to $1.36 Billion in its Q114 results.