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DILG to LGUs: Support the collection of SIM card registration data

The national government has requested assistance from local government units (LGUs) in its awareness campaign about the implementation of Republic Act 11934, also known as the Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Registration Act, which goes into force on December 27.

The first piece of legislation approved by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., RA 11934, requires all end users to register their SIM cards with their respective telecommunications networks prior to activation in order to regulate SIM registration and use.

In a statement released on Monday, DILG Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. urged LGUs to take the lead in educating the people about the demands and significance of the law and called for a vigorous information campaign to be conducted at the local level.

In order to ensure public safety even in the online environment, Abalos urged local government units to make every effort to encourage responsible SIM card use, inform their constituents of the advantages of mandatory SIM card registration, and assist them with the registration process from beginning to end.

He claimed that the SIM Registration Act will help the Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies stop the rise of criminal activities in the Philippines that are supported by electronic communication, such as mobile phishing, spam text messages, online scams, bank frauds, and identity theft.

According to Abalos, the law’s implementation will not only force accountability from all parties, including mobile users, telcos, the government, and authorities, but it will also make it easier for the PNP to find criminals who commit crimes while remaining anonymous by using electronic devices.

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has published the law’s implementing rules and regulations (IRR), and Section 4 states that the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DILG) as well as other government entities like DICT, NTC, DepEd, and telecom companies are required to “facilitate all SIM registrations in remote areas with limited telecommunication or internet access.”

In order to expedite the construction of registration facilities in physically remote locations, which must be completed within 60 days of December 27, DILG will work with DICT and the NCT in conjunction with local government units (LGUs).

In remote locations, the DILG director asked local chief executives (LCEs) and barangay captains for help processing the necessary paperwork and other procedures to set up the registration centers.

He continued, “Let us reach out to them and notify them of this new rule since we know not everyone has access to the internet and other forms of communication.”

All current SIM users who wish to register must do so within 180 days via a database platform or website made available by the telco firm. The registration time may be extended by the DICT for an additional 120 days. SIM cards will be deactivated in the event that a subscriber does not register.

Full name, nationality, birthday, passport, proof of Philippine address, return ticket to own country, address, sex, and mobile SIM number and serial number (for individuals); business name, business address, and the full name of authorized signatory (for businesses and other juridical entities) (for foreigners and tourists).

In order to safeguard their underage children or other family members from malicious persons, Abalos further asked parents and guardians to exercise responsibility and register the SIM card used by those individuals under their names. A valid ID and a consent form will be required from them.

“To our parents and guardians, let’s support one another in this effort to protect children. Let’s work together to protect them from online fraud, he said. “Magtulungan po tayo upang masiguro na hindi sila mabibiktima ng mga panloloko.”

Abalos also urged people to support the requirement for SIM card registration since it will ultimately be advantageous.

He said, “I urge all Filipinos to register their SIM cards and join forces with the government in the fight against text and online scams, which have been increasingly common in recent years.

Abalos issued a warning to individuals who would attempt to register a SIM using fake or misleading information and documentation, as well as to those who would attempt to spoof a registered SIM in order to commit fraud or cause injury.

Spoofing carries a six-year prison sentence or/and a fine of PHP200,000. Registering a SIM card with fraudulent or fictitious information or using bogus identities has a punishment of imprisonment of six months to two years and a fine of PHP100,000 to PHP300,000.

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