Nepal Telecommunications Authority has drafted a rule that disapproves using sim cards registered with other person‘s name. The provision of “E-KYC system” restricts users from using the sim cards that were initially registered with other people’s details.
The misuse of sim cards under other people’s name for criminal activities is quite prevalent in Nepal. After many complaints received directly from the Prime Ministers office regarding this issue, the telecom came up with this procedure. According to the spokesperson of Nepal Telecommunications Authority, Min Prasad Aryal, telecom is bringing forth “E-KYC System” to minimize the use of others sim cards.
Aryal says that the system of E-KYC is aimed at preventing the misuse of sim cards and to reduce the multiple sim cards being registered under same names. He says, “The first steps of the system are ready to be implemented. The stages of this procedure still need deep analysis and discussion. Even though the procedure need discussion, it will surely discourage the use of sim cards under other person’s details.” On the other hand, the current provision of having multiple sim cards under the same registration may be stopped as well. He says, “Although the procedure right now doesn’t include the number of sim cards that can be registered by the same person, it may be added after a discussion of the authorities.”
Aryal also mentioned that, “Currently there are 6 service providers. The customers can choose which service they want and each sim cards needs to be registered by filling separate forms. This is quite a tedious task. So, telecom plans to prepare a central database with digital finger print and digital photo. This will be linked to national identification database in the future.”
Once the central database is created, the customers can only issue a sim card from the dealers by registering the finger print and digital photo. The data will then be tallied with the data with the government and only the sim card will be issued. So, only the person with the name in the registration can claim the sim card. This system allows to easily identify the number of sim cards that a person already owns, so it can also be monitored.”
This system will not only be implemented to new sim cards, but the existing sim card owners will have to re-register their cards. For this they will have to go to the dealers and register their fingerprints along with digital photo for a certain time frame which will be released. This will help to identify the legitimacy of the documents of customers and will also prevent sim duplication. Aryal added, “Currently the sim cards can be issued by normal shops, this doesn’t help in the data collection and doesn’t ensure the legitimacy of documents. Right now, with 10 photocopies of a person’s document, the customer can issue 10 sim cards. All 10 cards can be misused illegally. So, to prevent the misuse of sim cards and to make the service trust worthy, this procedure is starting soon.”