Mobile users believe SIM registration will help deter fraud, scam
Mobile users across the country believe that the government-mandated SIM registration will help discourage fraudsters who use the anonymity of unregistered mobile numbers to commit elaborate scams and other mobile phone-aided criminal activities.
“The SIM Registration Act will help lessen our concerns on text scams and cybercrimes and make it easier for the government to catch the bad guys behind these crimes. I really support this campaign and I am thankful that Smart is here at school to assist us with our inquiries and help us understand more about this,” according to Chiko Christy Pace, an architecture student from the University of Mindanao – Matina Campus, where PLDT’s wireless unit Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) has set up one of hundreds of assisted SIM Registration booths across the country. These booths offer information and guidance on how to register Smart or TNT SIMs using acceptable ID cards, as well as provide physical assistance to senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and those using non-data phones.
In Moalboal, Cebu, Mirabelle Saranillo, is a person with disability who was able to register her SIM at the Smart booth deployed in her barangay, after hearing about the SIM registration rollout from the Moalboal LGU’s Facebook post.
“I made sure to come to the assisted SIM registration booth of Smart because a friend had advised me earlier that registering my SIM would help stop or protect me from scams and other forms of SIM-aided crimes. I am a single mom of three and I will also encourage my children to register their SIMs so they are protected against the many forms of scams. Two of my children are already in the right age. I have one minor child that I need to register since minors are not allowed to register their own SIMs,” Saranillo said.
According to Republic Act (RA) 11934 or the Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Registration Act, all SIM users have until April 26, 2023 to register their SIMs under their name, or risk deactivation of their SIM. The SIM Registration Act regulates the use of SIM cards to help curb the proliferation of text scams and other mobile phone-aided criminal activities.
Aiza Quijano, a distributor agent supervisor at Elvir’s Bluesky Telecom in Cagayan de Oro, leads a number of hardworking frontliners who have been making sure Smart and TNT subscribers are able to register their SIM. Setting up SIM registration stations in strategic areas, Aiza and her team have been assisting subscribers, especially senior citizens and people with special needs, register their SIMs.
“We do this because we want the public to feel safe and prevent them from being susceptible to scams, which has been a major concern for mobile users these days. We also help them realize the benefits of registering their SIMs other than making them aware that it is now a national law,” Aiza shared.
Smart has been deploying assisted SIM Registration booths in far-flung municipalities in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, in close collaboration with organizer National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), the Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT), the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the inter-agency committee on remote areas registration, and other public telecommunications entities.
“Mobile services are important in our community because we mainly use cell phones to communicate and to exchange information with residents in the town center. Before, people needed to trek to our community just to deliver messages,” said Jemelyn Arguilles, chieftain of the Aeta community in Barangay Banoyo, San Luis, Batangas. Arguilles and her neighbors walked for 20 minutes to get to the Smart SIM registration booth at the barangay hall.
Smart has also actively engaged its partner malls across the country, to ramp up SIM registration and enable all mobile users to comply with the law.
To Central Mindanao University student Nerf Onipa, “It is high time that we prioritize safety and security, in this digital age. We are happy that Smart has set up a SIM registration booth in our school to make this initiative more accessible to students,” she said.
Aiza Quijano, a distributor agent supervisor at Elvir’s Bluesky Telecom in Cagayan de Oro, leads a number of hardworking frontliners who have been making sure Smart and TNT subscribers are able to register their SIMs.
“While it’s certainly not a silver bullet, we at PLDT and Smart believe that SIM Registration adds a layer of protection for our customers from mobile phone-aided criminal activities, including scams and predators. This is why we support the government’s efforts to enable all mobile users to comply with the SIM Registration Law,” said Cathy Yang, First Vice President and head of Group Corporate Communications at PLDT and Smart.
New and existing Smart Prepaid and TNT subscribers may also visit PLDT and Smart stores and access Smart’s SIM registration portal through https://www.smart.com.ph/simreg, while Postpaid customers can simply text YES to 5858 to confirm their registration.
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