Sim cards will now be required to be registered with the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and their respective carriers starting in December. Photo from the Inquirer.
President Ferdinand "BongBong" Marcos Jr. signed the SIM Card Registration Bill into law last Monday, October 10, 2022.
President Marcos signed the bill into law to boost the government's initiative to fight scams perpetrated through text and online messages, which were very prevalent this year, undersecretary and officer in charge of the Office of the Press Secretary (OPS) Cheloy Garafil said.
The Republic Act (RA) No. 11934 requires telecommunication companies to require buyers to register identification information such as Name, Address, Sex, Birthdate, and Cellphone Number. Registrants will also be asked to present one Government issued I.D. as a part of the verification process; School IDs will be required from underaged buyers.
SIM card users are required to register with respective telecommunication companies within 180 days or their SIM cards will be deactivated.
The law ensures that information collected will remain confidential unless required by the court, breach of this confidentiality clause by Public Telecommunications Entities (PTEs) will result in a fine of P500,000 to P4,000,000.
SIM Card Buyers that will provide false information to PTEs, spoof a registered SIM, and retail stolen SIMs are punishable by six months to two years of jail time and a fine of P300,000.
Bill Sponsor Senator Grace Poe remarked that the new law is a step towards fending off text scammers all the while guaranteeing respect and preserving fundamental human rights.
The Implementing Rules and Regulations of the act will be crafted by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and partner agencies within 60 days after President Marcos signs the law.