NCA Orders Deactivation of SIM Cards from Monday, April 17, 2023


The National Communications Authority (NCA) has issued a directive for all telecommunication operators and internet service providers to deactivate a wide category of SIM cards from their network.

This follows the recent reports of fraudulent SIM registration in the country, charging the telcos to ensure that such SIM cards are delinked from the central SIM register on Monday, April 17, 2023.

Failure to provide evidence of carrying out the directive by Tuesday, April 18, 2023, according to the NCA will come with sanctions to defaulting operators.

Read also: Users of Unofficial WhatsApp Versions Permanently Banned.

This has raised concerns for businesses and individuals whose mobile money wallets are directly associated with their SIM card numbers, as the directive could force these numbers to be churned from the networks.

In addition, the directive is in contrast with the Payment Systems & Services Act 2019, which requires two years of dormancy for inactive accounts to be churned.

Despite operator concerns, the NCA is maintaining its directive as it attempts to tackle ongoing fraudulent SIM registration.

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However, industry observers have raised the question of whether the mass SIM registration will actually solve fraudulent SIM registration, as there are concerns over the failing of the NCA’s SIM registration platform, which does not have a verification component.

The data collected by the NCA is incompatible with the National Identification Authority’s (NIA) database, meaning it cannot be used for verification purposes.

Check: NCA Collaborates with Telcom Operators to Develop Shortcode to Verify Number of SIM Cards Linked to a Ghana Card

The NCA and Bank of Ghana are said to have a territorial issue and lack a good working relationship when it comes to collaborative regulation of the industry.

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