Congress approves the final reading of the SIM Registration Bill

If this bill turns into law, then everyone who uses or purchases a SIM Card would be required to register their legitimate information. Similar to a government ID.

SIM Card and SIM Card Slot found on the Cherry Mobile Aqua S9

Yesterday, the House of Representatives has approved House Bill No. 5793 that requires everyone to register their SIM Cards. The main reason this was approved was so that local law enforcement could easily track down cellphones of users that may use them for potential criminal activities such as theft and kidnapping

Under this new bill, all public telecommunication entities (PTEs), and SIM Card direct sellers would have to require users to fill a control-numbered registration form as well as present one valid ID with photo. These can include your passport, voter’s ID, driver’s license, etc. Also, under this proposed law, PTEs would require to submit updated data of their registrants to the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) every six months.

Information users would have to input on this registration form include but are not limited to:

  • Registrant’s full name
  • Date of Birth
  • Gender
  • Address

Users who already own SIM Cards are not immune to this law, as they too are required by law to register their SIM as well. Failure to comply would mean the deactivation of their SIM Card by telcos. Foreign nationals who purchased a SIM Card in the country are also affected by this bill

A confidentiality clause in this bill prohibits the disclosure of information on a subscriber unless requested by appropriate law enforcement for the purpose of criminal investigation.

PTEs and ISPs that fail to comply would have their operations ceased. In addition, a fine of up to Php 1 million for PTEs, and Php 50,000 for direct sellers might be imposed.

Government employees, if caught doing criminal or fraudulent activity, may face a dismissal of duty and there would also be a fine as dictated by the court.

Source: CNN